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Oman women

Global game: Oman women receive boost with new sponsorship

By Emerging Cricket

A local delivery company has come on board to sponsor the Oman women's cricket team for the next two years.

The sponsorship deal – worth roughly US $80,000 – comes on the back of steady improvement this year from Oman as they made their women's T20I debut in a tri-series in Qatar, and hosted a successful home series against Germany.

It’s hoped that the support will help them catch up with the men’s team, which has made significant progress recently, currently ranked 13th in ODIs, 18th in T20Is, and leading the points table of the ICC Cricket World Cup League 2.

At a signing ceremony at the Oman Cricket Academy outside Muscat, senior board member Pankaj Khimji said, "We are extremely pleased to have received such a wonderful support. Improvement in cricket is all about playing more matches and more tournaments. This sponsorship will lead to our girls getting more exposure at international level and gain more experience which will give them confidence to perform better."

As well as cricket, this deal is seen as a step forward for women’s sport in a nation where female participation has historically been limited. The company’s managing director Asma al Maraghi acknowledged the disparity in his statement: "Oman has a very young and talented girls team and that’s what companies who want to contribute ask for. In Oman, women and sport is still something new and creative which meets the values of our company."

For her part, women’s captain Vaishali Jesrani, was keen to get results on the field, saying that the sponsorship 'has come at a very important time for us. The girls are really happy and charged up to perform better.'

Charity drives in Ireland and Scotland

Irish cricket has rallied around former batsman and wicket-keeper Andrew Patterson, with a fundraising campaign reaching its target of £25,000 in less than 48 hours. Now a PE teacher, Patterson was diagnosed with Hereditary Spastic Paraplegia (HSP) in 2013, a rare disorder which results in weakness and stiffness of the legs. A recent medical assessment revealed that the 45-year-old father of three’s condition had deteriorated, and that his house needed significant modifications, including a lift up the stairs, for him to remain mobile.

With a career spanning the better part of a decade from 1996-2002, Patterson represented Ireland’s combined national team 61 times, as well as turning out for the separate Northern Ireland side in the 1998 Commonwealth Games in Kuala Lumpur – including a crucial 31 to set up victory against Bangladesh. He also represented Surrey in county cricket.

Scotland internationals Ali Evans and Craig Wallace recently completed their Cycle4Con bicycle charity tour of England and Scotland. Cycling in honour of ex-teammate and captain Con de Lange, the pair travelled 672 miles (de Lange’s cap number for Scotland) as they raised nearly £14,000 for brain tumour research, in association with Brain Tumour Research, an organisation with which de Lange became heavily involved after his diagnosis in 2018 until his death in April 2019 aged just 38.

For Wallace, the journey was extremely personal as he reflected on the pain of losing a beloved teammate: "I really want to do this to try and find a cure so it doesn’t take families and good people away too soon again. Con was the best man I’ve ever met and it hurts me so much he was taken from his family so early."

Botswana Cricket Association in line for national award

Botswana will be celebrating its 40th annual Sports Awards at an event in the capital Gaborone on 21 November. The awards showcase excellence in Botswanan sport and Colonel Botsang Tshenyega, president of the country’s National Olympic Committee (NOC), told AllAfrica.com that the theme was 'Stars That Rise', a nod to the NOC’s goal of helping Botswanan athletes rise to the top of their fields.

To that end, cricket has been nominated for an administrative award, the National Sports Association of the Year. The recognition comes after the national team won through the regional pathway to make the Africa Finals of the T20 World Cup qualification ladder last year, and the Botswana Cricket Association (BCA) is planning to host ICC events in 2021. Botswana’s Monitor recently reported that the BCA is in the process of submitting bids for the U19 Africa Qualifier scheduled for October 2021, and the Women’s T20 Africa Qualifier slated for December next year.

Uganda to tour Qatar for quadrangular series

In more African news, Uganda have announced the men’s training squad for a planned tour of Qatar next month. The 21-man group assembled at Kampala’s Lugogo Oval on 6 November, with assistant coach Jackson Ogwang and interim manager David Turinawe keeping a watchful eye on proceedings ahead of new coach Lawrence Mahatlane’s arrival in the Ugandan setup. One notable inclusion is young seamer David Wabwire, who last played for the Cricket Cranes at the U19 level several years ago before pursuing a medical degree.

The international trip, which is pending Qatari government approval, reinforces the relationship between Uganda and the Gulf state after their visit for a T20I series in February saw a 2-1 victory for Qatar. The planned tour is set to offer a variety of cricket for match-starved Associates, with Nepal and Malaysia slated to join Uganda and the hosts in a four-way tournament.

Nepal men's team is preparing for a quadrangular series in Qatar
Nepal men's team is preparing for a quadrangular series in Qatar

Nepal training back underway

The Nepal men’s team is set to resume training in two weeks' time as they prepare for the quadrangular series in Qatar. President of the Cricket Association of Nepal (CAN), Chatur Bahadur Chand, told MyRepublica that the return to practice was scheduled immediately following the conclusion of the national festival of Chhath.

CAN made the announcement after National Sports Council approved their coronavirus management plan for the sessions, with measures including pre-training swab tests for players.

Global Game is a collaboration between the ICC and Emerging Cricket.

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