Five College Cricket Players of the Year 2011 will be declared, in no special order. Selection criteria includes off the field and on the field performances.
Naveen Thiagajaran has now led the Auburn University Tigers 4 times to Florida to compete in 2 South East regionals and 2 national American College Cricket Championships, beginning March 2010. Three times the team has driven 14 hours to Ft Lauderdale to play, this South East regional being the first time they’ve been able to afford flying.
The Tigers impress with their great team efforts, in bowling and batting. Their top batsman has been 2 time All American Prasanna Ravishankar,but a number of other players like All American Rahul Potghan, Vibudh Misra, Ahmed Faraz, Sakthi Kandasammy,Prashant Dubey have contributed greatly.
An excellent captain,with an ever ready smile,Naveen led the Tigers to the final four at the nationals in March 2011. As a batsman, he has given Auburn solid starts as an opener. In 6 innings in 2011 (at the South East regional & the American College Cricket Spring Break Championship) he made three fifties, 56*,59 & 50 .He also made 2 other good scores of 25 and 20 (when he featured in a partnership of 93 runs).
Against SEC rivals, the Gators Naveen led Auburn to the South East title in 2010, and his 50 in the 2011 Finals almost took the Tigers to victory, but after he was out, UF was able to win by 16 runs. Naveen seems to save his best for rivals Gators, with 56* and 50 in his 2 games vs them.
In a team of good bowlers, Thiagarajan also bowls the occasional tight spells, and took a couple of wickets.
Since 2009 the Auburn guys have held a tapeball tournament, the Tiger Cup under floodlights. In 2011 it included the University of Alabama at Tuscaloosa, Mississippi State University, University of Memphis, and Jackson State University. As Auburn Cricket Club President Naveen played a large role, along with Vice President Rahul Potghan, in organising the tournament.
In 2010 just prior to their first American College Cricket Championship the club was urged to become a formal club to represent Auburn University. Their American College Cricket accomplishments have since earned more support from the school, and recently they were able to buy new uniforms and equipment.
In a bunch of disciplined and helpful students dedicated to American College Cricket, a number of players on the Auburn Cricket team could be contenders for Player of the Year and Club President and Captain Naveen is a perfect representative as a 2011 an American College Cricket Player of the Year.
Thiagarajan expects to graduate with a PhD in Mechanical Engineering in 2012.