As the popularity of cricket rises in the United States, so is the demand for indoor training facilities. The lack of cricket-friendly training facilities in New Jersey prompted Sonika & Sid, owners of DAS Adventure Sports, to contact On Deck Sports.
“It was a mix of community need, passion, and a desire to see the sport grow in popularity,” stated Das in a recent conversation. “There are only two or three other cricket facilities in New Jersey that we know of, so we wanted to provide another one and enable people to practice throughout the year, especially in the winter.”
THE IDEAL BUILDING
Starting from the ground up, Das needed to find a suitable building for their training facility and Sid connected with On Deck Sports facilities expert, Ryan Kane, who provided helpful suggestions on the ideal building characteristics Das should seek. Shortly thereafter, Das found a great 12,000 square foot facility to start their business.
“Cricket facilities are actually very similar to baseball/softball facilities because they both need batting cages,” said Kane. “The only difference was Das needed narrower & longer cages than your typical baseball batting cage.”
LAYOUT and SPACE OPTIMIZATION
In his building, Das was able to fit five batting cages complete with retractable dividers nets so he could open the cages and create a full field experience.
“I love the retractable dividers because we have a lot of group coaching lessons which require more space,” said Das. “I always have the field open unless someone books a single tunnel.”
As for the netting of the dividers and cages, Das chose #36-gauge netting because he needed a durable net. On Deck Sports’ #36 commercial grade netting is the most common type for indoor baseball, softball, and cricket facilities and can be customized to fit any space.
Kane suggested Das also install a shell net, to protect the walls and lights.
Next, Das needed to decide on a playing surface. After receiving samples from On Deck Sports, Das chose the GT34 padded turf (the most popular artificial turf for indoor facilities). GT34 turf is durable, with a 5-7-year shelf-life, and comes with a 5mm pad. The padding of GT34 turf gives a real grass feel, which Das says helps the ball bounce better.
“The feedback on the turf is great,” said Das. “The padding provides great comfort and support for people running and walking on it for long periods of time.”
NEXT STEPS and EXPERIENCE
Even though the tunnel cages are narrower and longer than a typical baseball cage, Das has noticed the ability to offer baseball services as well. While he hasn’t seen much baseball traffic yet, he expects a lot of use during the winter months.
“Overall, On Deck Sports was very helpful in providing value and their responsiveness was always timely, which is greatly appreciated,” stated Das.
Asked if he would work with On Deck Sports again, Das simply said, “Absolutely.”