The domestic cricket season has begun outdoors in some parts of Canada. Play began in late April in British Columbia, where there are now three leagues. The longstanding Victoria and District Association, and the British Columbia Mainland Cricket Leagues (BCMCL) are now joined by the Metro Vancouver Cricket League. The Metro Vancouver league includes some of the leading clubs previously with the BCMCL, such as Meraloma and Salim Akbar.
The opening matches in the new Metro Vancouver Cricket League saw Salim Akbar win by 2 wickets in a good early season match against Meraloma and also beat Windies by 44 runs while Richmond powered to a 156 run win over Surrey. There also has been some 20/20 early season play in the two other British Columbia leagues.
Alberta has a 20/20 competition this weekend (May 3 & 4) at Riley Park, Calgary, to help prepare for the upcoming National 20/20 competition at Maple Leaf Cricket Club, King City, Ontario that is due to begin on May 17th. The Alberta event includes teams representing both the Edmonton and Calgary District Cricket Leagues, Saskatchewan and an Alberta Select side. The Calgary and District League then starts in earnest with two weekend divisions – the Premier (7 clubs) and Division 1 (5 clubs) – and a weeknight league of 13 teams playing 15 overs-a-side cricket.
The Manitoba Cricket Association is staging some 20/20 matches at Assiniboine Park on May 10 & 11 to help prepare for the National tournament. The Manitoba league will be playing some matches in Brandon/Virden and Gimli this summer, where there is said to be demand for cricket. Hopefully this will lead to expansion of the game in that province. The ‘A' division comprises 9 teams and the ‘B' Division 4 teams with two recreational sides in the overall playing mix.
Cricketing action begins in the Greater Toronto Area on May 10th with action in the Etobicoke and District League and Canadian Commonwealth Cricket Association of Toronto (CCCAT) League. The new 9-team Elite Division of the T&DCA begins on May 24. Some divisions begin earlier.
The Hamilton and District Cricket Association (HDCA) season begins on May 24, the same weekend that the Ottawa Valley Cricket Council's top 50-over league – the Challenge Division - starts. The leading eight teams in the OVCC are involved in a 20/20 competition that began this weekend (May 3). The HDCA now includes two colts teams, one from Hamilton, the other from Mississauga.
Canada's International Commitments in 2008
On the International scene, Canada is due to host Bermuda in an ODI series starting in late June that will be followed by three ICC Intercontinental Cup matches (Canada v Bermuda and Canada v Scotland with a neutral venue Bermuda-Scotland match in between.)
A Tri-Nations ODI series involving West Indies, Canada and Bermuda is due to be played in late August at the Toronto Cricket, Skating and Curling Club.
Canada is due to be involved in the ICC Associates 20/20 Qualifying Tournament, an Intercontinental Cup match and an ODI against Ireland in early August. The ICC Americas Regional Division 1 championship is set for November in Florida.
Canada's women recently toured Trinidad & Tobago, losing all 5 matches, but gaining good experience. The team wore shirts with the Scotiabank name and logo, reflecting a new 3-year sponsorship the Bank has offered to Canadian cricket.
Four members of the ICC Americas Under-15 squad that has been playing in the CLICO International Under-15 Championships in the West Indies are from Canada.