Go Green Cricket & Sports Field is hosting its first-ever night-time tournament under newly installed LED sports lights and is equally excited that its special guest star will be the international cricket celebrity Shahid Afridi. Nick-named “Boom Boom!” after his aggressive batting style, Afridi is the recently retired former captain of the Pakistan national team. Also ranked as one of the world’s twenty most philanthropic athletes, Afridi chose the event because of its focus on youth & sports development in the heart of Thorncliffe Park & Flemingdon Park, one of North America’s largest South Asian Newcomer communities.
Afridi was born to a Pashtun family from Khyber Agency of the Federally Administered Tribal Areas of Pakistan. His endorsement of the Boom Boom! ON Go the Lights! event will draw fans from across the GTA, who worship Afridi as an icon and cricket as a near-religion.
The Boom Boom! ON Go the Lights! event will be held in honour of the lights installation & Canada’s 150thbirthday at the GGCSF in the backyard of Valley Park Middle School at 130 Overlea Blvd. The free event begins at 6 pm with a Family Fun Fair. Its “centrepiece” will be a “Second Biennial Grand Match” played between a Go Green Youth team vs the Toronto Police Cricket Club. (The first Grand Match commemorated the field’s official opening in June 2015.)
The Boom Boom! ON Go the Lights! event is a long-awaited achievement for the small not-for-profit community cricket field project built with love, passion & by grassroots fundraising two years ago. With the recent lights installation, Go Green now boasts being Canada’s first illuminated cricket field. Led by trained cricket & multi-sport youth coaches, Go Green has also emerged as a respected provider of accessible year-round youth programs. Solid performance of its five competitive cricket teams also make it a dominant and rising club within the City’s Toronto & District Cricket Association.
Go Green would like to thank its Phase Two Lights, Scoreboard & Cricket Practice Cage donors including Jays Care Foundation ($150,000), FedDev Ontario’s CIP 150 grant ($258,301), SmartCentres Inc. & Penguin PickUp ($200,000), the City of Toronto ($50,000) & the Pakistan Consulate-General, Toronto ($50,000). Go Green’s valued major program sponsors also include Greenwin Inc., Park Properties Inc., Canadian Tire Jumpstart Charities, the Toronto & District School Board Priority Site Initiative and Focus on Youth Toronto programs, as well as the Ontario Sport & Recreation Communities Fund and Canada Summer Jobs program. Go Green thanks Celestica Inc. for generously storing its lights for two years while installation funds were raised.
Afridi is visiting Toronto to introduce the Shahid Afridi Foundation to people living in Canada, as it becomes one of Pakistan’s most high-profile philanthropic organizations supporting impoverished communities.
- 6-10 pm Fun Fair with presence of Toronto Police Chief’s Ceremonial Guard & Canine Unit, a Jays Care Foundation youth baseball development clinic & food vendors by Thorncliffe Women’s Committee
- 7:30 pm Afridi arrives
- 8:30 pm Speeches
- 9:15 pm Boom Boom! ON Go the Lights! & the Grand Match Begins