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Darjeeling Cricket Club :UAE’s oldest amateur cricket club in Dubai

Darjeeling Cricket Club (DCC)  is a Western Expat Club, with its members being cricketers from England, South Africa, Australia &a New Zealand, mainly. Founded in 1969, the Club was originally based on grounds made available by the then Ruler of Dubai, Sheikh Rashid. Our grounds, clubhouse and bar were on Al Khail Road, adjacent to the Dubai Exiles rugby ground and Dubai Country Club, and we were a key part of the expatriate scene for nearly 40 years. We played regular fixtures against local teams, touring sides and itinerant ships, and hosted an annual International Sixes tournament. Most good cricketers in the UAE have probably played at our former grounds at some point, as have several members of the NZ team of the ’90s. We also have a proud history of youth development, including many juniors into our sides and coaching several school teams. We also hosted several Emirates charity matches and coaching sessions with the likes of Rod Marsh, Joel Garner and Mike Gatting, and assisted the UAE youth team with free access to our grounds, nets and facilities. 

In 2008 we lost our grounds to the Meydan development and spent over two years playing occasional matches at Zabeel Park and other grounds as we searched for a new base. In Jan 2011 we resumed playing regular Friday cricket at Sharjah English School (SES) on a newly-laid astroturf wicket with a grass outfield. In Jan 2013 we moved to the county-standard turf pitches at the ICC Academy in Dubai Sports City, while retaining playing privileges at SES as well. Lately the Club has seen a resurgence with an influx of new members complementing our roster of members with long tenures, and a year-round fixture list. We play through the year, mostly 20/25/30 over matches and a few 40s on Fri. and/or Sat. afternoons, and net every Tue. from 8-9 pm at the ICC Academy. We plan to play 70 matches this year with our 50+ playing members who have played quality club cricket in their home countries, often elsewhere too. 

For cultural reasons we are selective about membership, and as a private club, reserve the right. Annual membership is AED 1,500 and we don’t employ professional cricketers. We are known in UAE cricket circles for our heritage and for playing honest cricket in the spirit of the game. The Club also has an active social aspect with pints at the pub after nets and matches, a pub quiz team, tables at testimonial dinners for international cricketers, group trips and tours to international matches, periodic evening socials, an Annual Awards Dinner and an Annual General Meeting. We tour selectively and are one of a few teams to have participated in the Chiang Mai International Cricket Sixes in Thailand for 27 consecutive years. This year we had our best performance ever, winning the Bromley Shield.


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