Microsoft, the US technology giant, has included plans for a cricket facility at the heart of a multi-million dollar expansion of their company headquarters near Seattle.
The blueprint for the 2.5 million square-foot expansion of Microsoft’s campus in Redmond, Washington, was unveiled on November 28, and is thought to be the first time that a recreational cricket ground has been included as part of a major corporate or community project in the United States.
The inclusion of the cricket pitch reflects the passion of, in particular, Microsoft’s Asian ex-pat employees – an increasingly influential demographic that includes the corporation’s current CEO, Satya Nadella, who was a promising offspinner when growing up in Hyderabad in the 1980s and early 1990s.
“Cricket for most of us South Asians is an obsession,” Nadella told ESPNcricinfo earlier this year. “I grew up with it, I played under some amazing captains, and ever since, I think, even in my day job, I reflect back on the lessons learned on the dusty fields of the Deccan Plateau.”