Shiva Pagarani (right) and Ranjeet Chavan, the architects of the Dubai Mammoths Club, after scoring unbeaten fifties at the Singhalese Sports Club ground in Colombo during the club's tour of Sri Lanka in 2019. Image Credit: Supplied picture

Dubai: Dubai Mammoths, a club made up of cricketers over the age of 40 years who work closely with the Dubai Cricket Council (DCC) in boosting the game, is out to spread positivity among the cricketers’ community. The members of this club, who are mainly businessmen and take time off regularly for tournaments, are on a mission to inspire youngsters that lack of cricket activity now due to the coronavirus pandemic should not in any way lower the enthusiasm of anyone for the game.

Speaking to Gulf News, Shiva Pagarani, Convenor of the Dubai Cricket Council, who formed this club along with Rajeev Chavan, said: “The theme of this club is to enjoy the game. We want everyone to be rearing to go as soon as the cricket action begins and play the game with the same enthusiasm they had in the past.”

The members are aware that a long lay-off can reduce the enthusiasm in a few after being used to inactivity. “It’s the passion of our club members who are mostly businessmen who have pushed us to keep playing. All of us love the sport and are willing to sacrifice a little time from our hectic daily schedules. We are all keeping fit at home by indulging in indoor cricket and eagerly waiting for the action to begin,” added Pagarani.

“Dubai Mammoths has given budding cricketers like Aryan Lakra, Ronak Panoly, Vriitya Aravind, Rudra Mahadev and Darshan Pagarani a chance to play with veterans like Yasser Khawaja, Qais Farooq (UAE national cricketer) and a few more oldtimers of UAE cricket. This blend of youth and old has worked for us on many occasions. That is how we won the 2019 Mammoths by Night title,” added Pagarani.

“Dubai Mammoths is an offshoot of the Yogi Group (one of the leading clubs in domestic cricket which has unearthed many talented players for the UAE team) and Sindhi Cricket Club and it was launched in 2014. Over the past six years, we have participated in all Division two tournaments organised by the DCC. The understanding between Dubai Mammoths and DCC is so good that we support one another and play a big role in conducting various leagues by the DCC. The League of Mammoths is played between four local teams - giving it a local flavor naming the teams as Jumeirah, Nad Al Sheba, Zabeel and Shindagha Mammoths,” noted Pagarani.

“Dubai Mammoths has also toured the UK on seven occasions, played thrice in Chiang Mai in Thailand, Sri Lanka and Nepal. We can be called a globe-trotting club too and wherever we’ve gone, we’ve spread the message of the importance of continuing to play the game with joy. Our mission will continue as soon as cricketing action resumes,” remarked Pagarani.