Kabir’s cricket bats powering int’l players’ strokes

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GR8 Sports was initially set up by Kabir’s father Abdul Kabir Dar in 1974 and since then the company used to supply unbranded bats to known brands, which continued till 2010….reports Asian Lite News

Braving all the challenges, a young entrepreneur from Anantnag district in south Kashmir has managed to get his cricket bat brand recognised at the international level.

Meet Fawzul Kabir (30), an MBA from Islamic University of Science & Technology, Awantipora, who hails from Anantnag district.

Kanir runs a Kashmiri willow bat industry named GR8 Sports on the Srinagar-Jammu highway near Sangam. Kabir’s bats are now being used by several international players.

GR8 Sports was initially set up by Kabir’s father Abdul Kabir Dar in 1974 and since then the company used to supply unbranded bats to known brands, which continued till 2010.

However, the brand started shining with the hardwork and passion of young Kabir, who left no stone unturned in getting GR8 bats recognised at the international level, particularly in England. Now GR8 bats are being used by several international players, including those who played in the T20 World Cup held in 2021 and 2022.

In the T20 World Cup held last year in the UAE, cricketers from Oman were seen using GR8 bats, while players from the UAE used them in the recently-concluded T20 World Cup in Australia.

“Since 2010, we changed our way of sending unbranded items to known brands, and went to the cricket playing nations to get our own brand recognised. While we met many importers, buyers and others, they didn’t initially respond well,” Kabir said.

Kabir then contacted the International Cricket Council (ICC) and managed to learn many things such as international standards, dimensions and other details required to become an ace bat manufacturer.

“We then visited the craftsmen who manufactured bats for top international players such as Steve Waugh, Sachin Tendulkar, Brian Lara and Ricky Pointing, among others, who helped us a lot, particularly in showing us how to make the final product,” Kabir added.

The company soon started manufacturing their own bats and presented samples to the ICC. After ICC nod, the bats are now being used by several international players.

Kabir now proudly says that for the first time bats made of Kashmiri willow are getting recognition at the international level.

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