From cricket to baseball in four months

Photo of Maninder Singh Ajmani has transitioned from a cricket player to the GBC baseball varsity team in just four months.

Maninder Singh Ajmani has transitioned from a cricket player to the GBC baseball varsity team in just four months. Photo: Preeteesh Peetabh Singh/The Dialog

He didn’t even know the rules of baseball four months back. Now he is on the George Brown College’s (GBC) varsity baseball team.

Maninder Singh Ajmani, 28, who is studying marketing management – financial services at GBC, is a big sports buff.

“I actually used to hate baseball, it seemed so slow. I was like, what’s the fuss all about? For cricketers it was just like hitting an easy full-toss ball,” said Ajmani.

Ajmani came from India last year and hopes to land a finance job after completing his course at GBC. Being an MBA in marketing and finance and a banker by profession, he loves numbers. He worked in northern India for Oriental Bank of Commerce as a marketing manager and then moved to ICICI Bank, which also has its operation in Canada, as a relationship manager in foreign exchange and trade transactions.

But sport has always been his passion.

“I have been involved in many sports activities since high school. It’s a parallel priority for me. I was the cricket captain in high school and also in college. I played for Scarborough Cricket Association’s team TP Tigers. I play tennis, ping-pong and I have been associated with many sports clubs,” said Ajmani.

Ajmani started playing GBC extramural cricket where he was the opening batsman as well as a fast bowler. “Fortunately GBC had a cricket team – considering it is not a very popular sport in Canada. So, I got involved with it,” he said.

Sangau Ahmed, GBC’s cricket captain said, “He is a great team player. He is very active in the field; supportive and brings in new ideas. Basically you need him on your team.”

Baseball co-ordinator Geoff Gordon met Ajmani on the social night held in April. Since he played cricket, Gordon suggested he should also try out for baseball.

Ajmani took the suggestion seriously and started to develop interest in baseball.

“The basic skills of cricket did help me a little like how to hold the ball, take catches etc. but after some time I figured out that it has a different science altogether. The rules are very different; it’s not as easy as I thought it would be,” said Ajmani.

“I used to watch Youtube videos. I used to bring my gloves home and practice, sometimes I used to practice alone at High Park. Whenever I took the filed, I learned a new thing.”

After three months of practice, he went to the baseball try outs and was one of 22 selected out of over 60 players.

Currently playing as a pitcher in the team, coach Kyle Mackinnon sees potential in him as an infielder at 2nd base, as mentioned by Ajmani. “I also like hitting; I am going to practice more. I am working with the coach on learning how to swing,” he said.

Ajmani believes people should not hesitate to try new things, not only in sports but also in life.

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From cricket to baseball in four months