By Evan Manning
Having played on the Ryerson cricket team for the past two seasons, Shan Antharajah has taken his game to the next level, representing Canada on the world stage.
Taking the semester off, the second year Information Technology Management major is competing in the Under 19 World Cup of Cricket in Bangladesh.
“It doesn’t get any better than this. I’m playing against the best competition for my age in the world,” says Shan. “This is definitely the biggest moment of my career so far.”
Starting out at the age of 12, Shan’s progression in the competitive world of cricket was rapid; playing for team Canada by the time he was 14.
“They had tryouts all over Canada, and picked the best 15 guys from each province. The provinces played eachother, and then they picked the best 15 guys to be on team Canada, out of maybe 60 or 75 guys,” says Shan.
Five years later, he’s playing in his first World Cup.
Shan remains humble despite his success at such a young age, attributing his success thus far to his father.
“He was the one who saw it in me. When I was young, he saw this potential in me, and was really the reason I started playing. So I owe him everything,” Shan said.
Team Canada will not have it easy in the tournament, as their group competes alongside powerhouse contenders Pakistan and Sri Lanka. And although Canada has never placed better than 11th, Shan still has confidence in the team’s overall ability.
“The other teams have an advantage, since they’re really playing 365 days a year. But we’ve got a team with a lot of potential, and if we play with our full abilities we can do well in this tournament,” Shan said.
Shan is also cogniscent of the fact that chances like this don’t come around very often.
“Right here is where I have the chance to make a name for myself, in cricket and in Canada. This is a big stage for me right now,” Shan said.
And in terms of balancing school while out of the country, representing his country, playing a sport he loves, Shan notes the difficulty but says he’ll be “just fine.”