Mubashir Aalam Wani
Srinagar, Oct 5: As Kashmiri willow cricket bat is all set to feature in the third world cup, manufacturers hope for the wider adoption of the native cricket bats in international cricket.
As per news agency—Kashmir News Observer (KNO), after marking its presence in two T20 world cups, Kashmiri cricket bats are all set to debut in the ODI world cup, which is currently being played in India.
As many as 18 cricketers from three international teams including Afghanistan, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh are going to use the Kashmir willow cricket bats in upcoming matches.
As such the manufactures believe that the ongoing world cup will bring more fame to the industry, thereby motivating other cricketers to choose Kashmir over English willow.
“This is just the beginning. In coming years, you will see more cricketers preferring to play with Kashmir willow cricket bats. We are making them (cricket bats) at par with English willow. Last world cup, Kashmir willow cricket bat hit the longest sixer of the T20 world cup,” said Fawzul Kabir, spokesperson of the Kashmir Cricket Bat Manufacturers Association.
Kabir said the cricket bats of Kashmir have witnessed a progress in the last three years after the Omani cricket team choose to bat with Kashmiri willow.
“Kashmiri willow was confined to the domestic market earlier. Now, in this world cup players of three international teams will use our cricket bats. We want to show the world that our cricket bats are at par with English willow,” he said.
Shabir Ahmad, another cricket bat manufacturers, expressed his excitement for the upcoming World Cup. “We are thrilled to see more teams showing interest in using Kashmir willow bats. It’s a testament to the quality and performance of our bats. We believe that this World Cup will mark our third consecutive victory on the global stage.” Pertinently, ahead of the world cup, demand for the Kashmiri willow cricket bats has increased by 10 times.
The demand, as per the manufacturers, for Kashmiri willow cricket bats is emerging from the entire India.
Currently, Kashmir has 400 factories manufacturing cricket bats, with which 1.5 lakh people are directly and indirectly associated.
Jammu and Kashmir government is also working hard to get a geographic indication (GI) for Kashmir willow bats