Finland is usually associated with sports played in the depths of winter. But an increasing numbers of Finns and foreigners are now helping to build a sport rooted in somewhat gentler climes: cricket.
Finnish cricket remains off the radar for many people in Finland. However, the sport is quietly growing and attracting new followers. Many of the players are from the Indian sub-continent, but increasing numbers of Finns are starting to get involved.
“We have so many immigrants and foreigners here for work and study. They all play cricket. Finnish people are also getting interested. There are a couple of Finnish teams in our league,” says Hariharan Dandapani, captain of the Finn-Asia Cricket Club in Turku.
While the sport has its own eccentricities, that has not prevented newcomers from joining.
Pasi Kankanpää of the club says he believes that the sport is a positive example of how immigration can enrich Finland.
The country’s cricket-lovers are keen for the sport to continue putting down roots and say they are already seeing some positive signs.