Dubai: The launch of the new schools cricket programme by International League T20 will focus on encouraging and promoting the cricket at schools level with a long-term vision identifying talent at a young age and investing in the future of UAE cricket.
The programme called ILT20 Schools Cup, which will be held in Abu Dhabi, Al Ain, Dubai and Sharjah, will establish a direct channel of the DP World ILT20 to UAE’s young and aspiring cricketers and provides them with a platform to show their talent. A total of six pools have been created for this competition. The six DP World ILT20 franchises Abu Dhabi Knight Riders, Desert Vipers, Dubai Capitals, Gulf Giants, MI Emirates and Sharjah Warriors have been assigned a pool each.
Strong support base
The programme, which commenced last week, has been organised for Under-18 players. A total of 35 schools are competing for the ultimate title — ILT20 Schools Cup Champion.
One team from each of the six pools will progress to the final stage of the competition and will conclude just before the start of DP World ILT20 Season 2 on January 17.
The franchises, through this initiative, will develop a strong support base with school children of their home city franchise.
Meanwhile, as an extension of the programme, before the start of each DP World ILT20 Season 2 fixture, school and cricket academy kids (seven to 10 years) will get an opportunity of playing soft ball cricket matches on the field.
This pre-match activity will last for around an hour each day and will provide the kids an incredibly exciting opportunity of taking the field at three world-class stadiums in the midst of their favourite cricket players and heroes with their families watching them from the spectator stands.
Shaping the future
DP World ILT20 CEO David White: “The International League T20 is all about shaping the future of UAE cricket. Following the big success of our inaugural development tournament, we are delighted to launch the ILT20 Schools Programme. The ILT20 Schools Cup is aimed at providing school children, an incredible opportunity of playing at our three world-class venues, which have hosted some of the biggest cricket tournaments and players over the course of their rich history.
“Through this initiative we are engaging with schools in Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Sharjah besides other UAE emirates. All our six franchises are working closely with us. Hundreds of school children will participate in the programme and we are confident that many of them will take up the sport as their passion and potentially as a career. By participating in this programme for the next couple of months, these children are likely to fall in love with this great game of ours just like billions have from around the world.”