x Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 23 July 2017

Three national players to showcase talents in Durham

Ahmed Raza, the leading wicket-taker on their tour of Bermuda, Shoaib Sarwar and Qasim Zubair will make their annual trip to England with YTCA.

DUBAI // Three national team players will get the chance to remind the selectors of their abilities when they travel with the country's most prolific academy side on a tour of the UK later this month. The Young Talents Cricket Academy (YTCA) has proved a fertile breeding ground for cricketers over the years. Three members of the current UAE squad - Ahmed Raza, the leading wicket-taker on their tour of Bermuda, Shoaib Sarwar and Qasim Zubair - all graduated from the YTCA.

The Sharjah-based academy make their annual trip to the north of England this month, when they play in a tournament hosted by Durham, England's champion county. Fahad al Hashmi and Wasim Bari, two seam bowlers on the fringes of the national team, are part of the tour party. Rameez Shahzad, one of the UAE's brightest young players who is currently studying in the UK, will also join up with his former colleagues for the tournament, which starts on July 25. "For eight years we've been developing the relationship between Durham and the UAE," said Geoff Cook, the coach who has led Durham to successive County Championship titles.

"I am always delighted to see how much the experience is enjoyed by both groups. Their time on these tours is something they will never forget." pradley@thenational.ae