5 USA Cricketers You Should Know as a Cricket Fan!

This might surprise you, but the United States of America (USA) was part of the first-ever international cricket match played in 1844.

After several decades, the USA is now taking quick strides in international cricket, a sport that’s unknown to many people across the country.

However, the gentleman’s game is slowly making inroads in the USA, with the launch of Major League Cricket (MLC) in 2023 and being a co-host for the T20 World Cup in 2024. The latest World Cup is expected to increase the popularity of the sport in the USA, especially since the team defeated Pakistan in a match, which left Indian betting sites stumped at the turn of events. 

In the country’s illustrious history, a lot of players — native and overseas — have played a key role in cricket’s growth in their backyard.

Here we’ll look at the 5 standout USA cricketers who are making waves with their performances.

Saurabh Netravalkar

Once, he dreamt of carving a place in the Indian cricketing scene, but destiny had some other plans. Saurabh Netravalkar is now the leading wicket-taker for the USA in limited-overs cricket.

Netravalkar, a Mumbai-born cricketer, represented India in the 2010 Under-19 World Cup. And he was the highest wicket-taker for the Indian team, with 9 scalps in 6 games.

After the rousing performance, he hoped to make a mark in the Indian domestic circuit, but chances came hard by. Thus, in 2015, the left-arm pacer put his cricket dream on hold and decided to pursue a master’s degree in computer engineering from Cornell University in the USA.

After his graduation, he bagged a job at the software giant company, Oracle. Alongside his job, Netravalkar engaged in recreational cricket on weekends.

In 2018, he became eligible to represent the USA and made his List A debut for them against the Leeward Islands. Since then, Netravalkar has been part of the USA cricket team and also led them between 2019 and 2021.

Monank Patel

The current USA skipper, Monank Patel, is among the top run-scorers for the USA in limited-overs cricket. Born and brought up in Gujarat, India, the wicketkeeper batter failed to make a mark at the under-19 level.

In 2014, Patel decided to move to New Jersey, USA for better opportunities. Later in 2016, he opened a Chinese restaurant and doubled up as a chef and manager.

After loss-making 2 years, he shut down his restaurant and swirled into cricket in 2018, making his List A debut for the USA in 2018.

Then he slowly rose through the ranks, cementing his place in the squad. In 2021, Patel was given charge of the USA team after Saurabh Netravalkar stepped down as captain.

In the 2024 T20 World Cup, he led the USA to hand Pakistan a shocking defeat by scoring a match-winning half-century.

Also Read | The Top 3 Cricket Stadiums in the United States of America

Steven Taylor

Steven Taylor is one of the few US-born players who has made a mark in international cricket. A destructive batter by nature, Taylor represented the USA in age-level cricket. 

He showcased his power-hitting against Papua New Guinea in the 2011 Under-19 World Cup Qualifiers by scoring 140 off 120. Soon, Taylor found his way to the senior side and smashed some big scores in T20 and One-Day matches.

However, he has struggled to put in remarkable performances consistently. In between, he played first-class cricket in the Caribbean Islands for Jamaica.

Since the last few years, Taylor has been an indispensable member of the USA team, delivering some impactful performances.

Aaron Jones

Aaron Jones is another US-born player, though he started his professional cricket career for Barbados in 2016. He also played a few first-class matches before turning up for the USA in 2018.

In a short period, Jones became the backbone of the USA batting setup. The right-hand batter played a crucial role in the country gaining ODI status in 2019.

Jones brings a bit of a Caribbean flavour to his batting, having played with some of the best West Indies players on their domestic circuit. His batting was on display during the T20 World Cup 2024 opening match against Canada, where he blasted an unbeaten 94.

Ali Khan

Ali Khan has been a globe-trotter, having turned up for several franchises in T20 leagues across the world. His pace has been the primary reason behind him getting roped-in by franchises.

And that was also the reason he made it to the USA squad after getting picked up in the ICC Americas combined squad in 2016. That’s how he came on the radar of Guyana Amazon Warriors in the Caribbean Premier League the same year.

In 2020, Ali Khan became the first USA player to feature in the Indian Premier League (IPL) after Kolkata Knight Riders picked him as an injury replacement, although he couldn’t play a game due to injury. In his short stint with the USA so far, he has displayed his bowling skills, being among the wickets.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *