After decades at the stands, Pakistan’s best known cricket fan gets global recognition

'Chacha Cricket,' is the affectionate nickname given to Abdul Jalil, a decades long cricket fan who has become one of the most recognizable faces of cricket fandom globally (Photo Via Instagram)
Updated 30 May 2019

After decades at the stands, Pakistan’s best known cricket fan gets global recognition

  • Abdul Jalil, famously dubbed ‘Chacha Cricket,’ will receive the Global Sports Fan Award on June 14 in Manchester
  • Attended his first cricket match in 1969, has since been to over 300 international matches

ISLAMABAD: A diehard fan of Pakistan’s cricket team, prominent because of his long facial hair and his traditional green shalwar kameez, is finally getting recognition for decades spent hitting stands around the world in support of his nation’s squad.
Abdul Jalil, 70, famously dubbed ‘Chacha Cricket,’ has been sponsored by the Pakistan Cricket Board to follow the Pakistan team around the world since 1998, receiving a monthly stipend of Rs. 26,000. This year, on June 14 in Manchester, he will receive the Global Sports Fan Award.
“After five decades of cricket frenzy madness, I am overwhelmed to get my first global recognition,” Jalil said in a press release. “This is an emotional moment for me and I would like to thank my family and all well wishers who stood by me.”
Originally from Sialkot, Jalil attended his first cricket match in 1969 and has since attended over 300 international matches.
Jalil will be receiving his award alongside Shoyab Ali aka ‘Tiger’ of Bangladesh, Gayan Senanayaka of Sri lanka, and Sudhir Kumar Gautam and Sugumar Kumar of India.
On Tuesday, the diehard fan left for England to support the Pakistan cricket team in the 2019 ICC Cricket World Cup. He was seen off at the Sialkot International Airport by scores of well-wishers.


LIVE: Saudi Cup - historic day of racing gets underway in Riyadh

Updated 25 min 8 sec ago

LIVE: Saudi Cup - historic day of racing gets underway in Riyadh

  • Follow all the day's action with Arab News

RIYADH: The day is finally here, the long-awaited Saudi Cup day of top-class racing gets underway at the King Abdul Aziz Racetrack on Saturday in the Saudi Arabian capital of Riyadh.

The day consists of eight races with a total purse of $29.2 million.

Prize money for the main event and final race of the day, the Saudi Cup, will be a record-breaking $20 million, with the winner taking home $10 million and the rest of the field sharing the rest.

Follow Arab News' coverage below...(all times GMT)

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11:10 - A fantastic video from the Saudi Cup official Twitter page shows jockey Yutake Take on board his mount in one of the Jockeys Challenge races on Friday!

10:45 - Here's your race card for today's racing (including the breaks for prayer) - the action starts at 4:00pm KSA time (1:00pm GMT) and the big one is scheduled to start at 8:40pm local time (5:40pm GMT)...

10:30 - As we wait for the fans to file in ahead of the first race of the day at 4:00pm Saudi time, check out a gallery by Arab News' Basheer Alzain Saleh and Huda Bashatah of yesterday's Kingdom Day...

GALLERY: Kingdom Day meeting, Saudi Cup in Riyadh

09:50 - Yesterday saw a host of male and female jockeys get a feel for the tracks at King Abdul Aziz Racetrack in the Jockeys Challenge races (read a report here) - but it was also a chance for the fans to get a feel for all the activities available away from the racing for the whole family at the track...

09:30 - We've got the latest turf track update - and the official Saudi Cup feed are saying today's going is Good to Firm on that immaculate-looking stretch of grass. It's an exciting day for Saudi racing fans as some fantastic horses will be running on the turf and dirt tracks today...

09:15 - Don't forget, you can read Arab News' coverage of the formation of the event and the build-up to today's historic race - as well as an account of yesterday's action on Kingdom Day - in our dedicated spotlight here...

09:00 - The gates have opened and we're officially kicking off the day's coverage!