Crickees, an app developed by QBurst Technologies, provides an online hosting solution for cricket tournaments, including the ongoing Technopark Premier League
Cricket is currently the buzz word in Technopark. And that’s not only because of team India’s raucous victory over England in the second One-Day International in Kochi, but also because of Technopark’s annual sporting showdown – the hugely popular Technopark Premier League (TPL), which was kicked off last week. This time around, in the 10th edition of the tournament, there are a whopping 129 teams in the fray and techies being techies there’s even a web app/software designed to manage the matches online! For the past several years now the four-month-long TPL is being hosted online by ‘crickees’ – a home-grown app developed by QBurst Technologies, a web and mobile applications development company headquartered at Technopark.
“Crickees is a user-friendly interface, developed using open source technologies and is a sort of a one-stop shop for everything on cricket, from team information and match schedules, statistics and fixtures, to highlights, live scorecards and previews and reviews of each game of the tournament. It has the capability to host cricket tournaments in all formats namely Test, ODI and T20 and it can support over 100 teams with ease,” says Ansar Sahabudeen, chief technical officer, QBurst, who led the team that developed the software. Crickees is Ansar’s brainchild. “Earlier all the scheduling and data for TPL was maintained manually, which led to a whole lot of confusion, especially when the number of teams and players increased. That’s when I came up with the idea for an app for cricket that could automatically calculate and collate everything related to a game,” explains Ansar. The software gives a global presence to local tournaments and also offers advanced features such as weather updates, audio-video uploading, and so on, all of which can be synced to popular social networking sites, available at a price.
Ever since it went live with TPL in 2008, crickees has become a popular hosting platform for several well-known local cricket tournaments in India, Canada, the United States, Singapore, the ‘Gulf’ countries, and so on; tournaments such as the CIMA Mayor’s School Cricket Tournament, Toronto, Canada, and Champions Trophy of the Central Florida Cricket Association.
Says Ansar: “We developed the software for the love of the game. Most of us on the team are avid fans of cricket and we wanted to do something for the game.” Crickees actually started off as an online scorecard prediction game for cricket matches, which allowed enthusiasts to guess the outcome of a game based on different parameters. Once the game/tournament is over, the software compares and tabulate the various predictions and the prizes would be handed out to those who came closest to the actual results. “The software was live during several One-Day Internationals and T20 games such as the Indian Premier League and was quite popular too. However, it was not a feasible model and we had to evolve it into an income-generator. That’s when TPL with its huge number of teams and participants became an inspiration. We have been hosting TPL free on crickees.com for the past five years now,” says Ansar.
For the love of the game
Cricket seems to be, by a long shot, the most popular sport at Technopark. Since it was started in 2002, TPL has grown to become the biggest contest on campus, one that sees the biggest participation of techies outside of Tech-a-break. “TPL was conceptualised as a fun contest, and also a chance for them to display camaraderie and sportsmanship. The contest started off with less than 20 teams and it has kept on growing throughout the years. This year’s turnout of 129 teams is the biggest we’ve ever had,” says Abhilash D.S., officer, administration and HR at Technopark, who has been associated with the event from the beginning. What makes TPL stand out is that there is no bar on the number of teams that can be fielded by any given company. Big companies such as IBS, Infosys and UST Global usually field multiple teams. The initial rounds of the TPL are played in league format and the semis and finals are knockout rounds
“Winning the TPL cup has become a prestige issue for companies. We are very serious about the game. Most of the teams are meticulous about practice and often head over to Technopark’s cricket ground or the Medical College grounds to practise before and after work hours. Most companies are also enthusiastic with support,” says techie and cricket enthusiast Rajesh A.V., who has participated in the event from the start, first with Toonz Animation and now with QBurst.