Shipping Companies Cricket Tournament (SCCT) started in the year 2004, is marked as a red letter day for the whole shipping fraternity, as it flagged off the first Shipping Companies Cricket Tournament (SCCT). The former Group General Manager Bill Young an ardent cricket fan himself inspired the employees of various shipping companies to participate in the tournament.
Undoubtedly the invitation was well received by all and the major four shipping companies namely Al Bader Shipping Company, AL Rashed International Shipping Company; Maersk Line and United Arab shipping Companies came forward and took the lead as the major sponsor of the tournament.
The initial years, with Al Bader Shipping Co. and AL Rashed Shipping Co. investing the ground in Sulaibiya area, the tournament earned a great response. The harsh dusty climate and the chilly winters of Kuwait did not hamper the enthusiasm of the cricket lovers and the first tournament led to be an astounding success. The Prize distribution ceremony with dinner was one of the highlights of the tournaments. The various awards given to the players and the Umpires added charm to the tournament.
The humble beginning of the tournament has made history and now is considered to be one of the most exciting and well organized tournaments within the Cricket fraternity of Kuwait. The tournament spread over 10 to 12 weeks has brought the shipping industry closer since then..
The patrons in chief, Esam Al Bader, the Chairman of Al Bader Shipping Company and Bassim Al Rashed, Director of Al Rashed International Shipping are the life line of the annual event. They take personal interest in keeping themselves updated of all the matches played between the companies and takes pride in the show put up by their individual teams. Al Bader Group Cricket Club (ABGCC) holds the honor of being the tournament champs for 9 times out of 11 years.
Ever since 2004 it has been a much awaited sporting event in the shipping fraternity of Kuwait. The tournament has seen some very regular participants like, Al Rashed International Shipping, Dana Kuwait Shipping Company, Gulf Agency Company (GAC), United Arab Shipping Company, Sharaf Shipping, Alghanim Barwill Co, Kuwait Transcontinental Shipping (KTS) etc. GAC & DKS shares the honor of being the champions of SCCT for one particular year in between.
The tournament has marked its 11th year in a unique and entertaining style. All the previous years the matches was played in broad daylight on concrete pitches but as a live event the last year (2014) SCCT matches were played under lights on turf wickets for the very first time. The matches were evenly spread out on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays with some of the matches concluding well beyond midnight. The tournament brought in a festive mood within the grounds with family present to cheer.
The vision of the organizers of SCCT, both Al Bader Shipping and Al Rashed International Shipping, keep a very distinct view of this event played every year by bringing in some very innovative and awe inspiring moments in conducting the whole tournament .
The last edition of the SCCT was spruced up with a grand opening ceremony where diplomatic dignitaries from Sri Lanka, India and Pakistan graced the occasion, had a fun filled activity for the families of the participating teams by the way of 'Guess and Win” contest wherein gifts were given away to the winners and also had the regular 'Man of the Match ' awards to players making exceptional contributions during their innings. The shipping and freight forwarding companies of Kuwait though compete fiercely among themselves in business come together to celebrated SCCT for a stipulated duration year after year to make this sporting event a grand success.
The ever increasing popularity of the tournament has even caught the attention of the Kuwait Cricket Association who had come forward last year with their support by providing us their well equipped ground. The music and the action in and out of the ground was indeed an experience which each member present would cherish.
The tournament played under Kuwait Shipping Agents Association along with Al Bader Shipping Company and Al Rashed International Shipping Company has come forward to unite the companies and the combined team efforts of all the team by volunteers for every match from every team made this tournament more of a family tournament.
Every year the organizers are on the lookout for innovations and unique ideas to bring the companies closer. This year too, the process of innovation blended with creativity and unity among Teams would witness a fun a frolic filled 10 to 12 weeks of Entertaining and Exciting Cricket for all the Cricket fans.
The inaugural function of SCCT 2015 was witnessed by diplomats, officials from Kuwait Cricket Association, senior managerial staff from the participating shipping companies, guests and family members of the players. The most important being, H.E. Dr, Assadullah Hanif Balkhi, from the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan to the state of Kuwait, H.E. Yagya Bahadur Hamal, from the Embassy of Nepal to the state of Kuwait, H.E. Muhammad Aslam Khan, from the Islamic Republic of Pakistan to the state of Kuwait, Shri. Shubashis Goldar, from Republic of India to the state of Kuwait, Nikhulu Sebothoma, from Republic of South Africa, Abdulrahman Amin the Group General Manager of Al Bader Group and Pradeep Menon representing Al Rashed International Shipping Company.
The representation of Kuwait Cricket Association was done by Murali Kutticode, Director Juniors and Corporate Cricket, Mr. Mehboob Khan, Director Women’s Cricket , Iqbal Rajporkar, and Riaz Choudhry Director Umpiring.
The proceedings included of hoisting of Kuwait national flag which was followed by playing the Kuwait national anthem. The individual senior managers representing various shipping companies did their part by hoisting the flags of their companies. The GGM of Al Bader Group, Abdulrahman Amin did the honors on behalf of the Kuwait Shipping Companies Agents Association by hoisting its flag.
The function was then followed by lining up of the all the 8 participating teams who had the good opportunity of listening to the pep talk of all the diplomats present for the occasion. The captains of the participating teams then happen to sign the winner’s trophy as a mark of observance to the preamble of the game of cricket and respect the laws of the game.
This was then followed by the diplomats letting the doves free to declare open the tournament and the captains flying the balloons simultaneously. There was a cake cut by all the diplomats present and a bat signed by them was handed down to the captains of the teams. As part of celebrations this time around a souvenir of the SCCT 2015 was also published and was declared open for distribution by the diplomats present.
The most fun filled part of the event was when the diplomats were asked to bat a ball each. The organizers were delighted to see the enthusiasm shown by all the 5 diplomats present when they readily agreed to do so. The annual sporting event this year, among the shipping companies of Kuwait, Shipping Companies Cricket Tournament commenced at the Sulaibiya turf grounds. This is the 12th year in succession this event is being held and like the last year the entire tournament will be played under lights.
It's a 12 week affair with 8 teams of the shipping and freight forwarding companies who will be vying for the title of the champions. The organizers of SCCT 2015 take immense pleasure in associating with Kuwait Cricket Association under the leadership of H.E. Sheikh Dari Fahed Al Sabah the president, Haider Farman, Secretary General, Emad Al Jassam the Executive council chairman, Asad Baig Director General, MMurli Kutticode Director Corporate Cricket has been a source of inspiration for all those who are involved in conducting this tournament.
The facilities provided by Kuwait Cricket Association are very ideal for a tournament as vital as SCCT. The organizers thank Kuwait Cricket Association for their continued support and letting the shipping companies to use their facilities. To round of the event in a grand style an extravagant dinner was served for all the guest present on the ground which each and everyone relished to the maximum. The opening game was played between Al Rashed and Inchcape Shipping which was witnessed by all the guest present at the venue.