Cricketers from Birmingham Bears and rugby players from Wasps joined forces at Knowle and Dorridge Cricket Club yesterday for the Neal Abberley Memorial Trophy.
With teams captained by Bears batsman Ian Bell and Wasps back Elliot Daly, players were mixed into teams for a T20 match, which raised £1,600 for the Warwickshire County Cricket Club Player Pathway and Zoe’s Place; a local charity supported by Wasps.
Fans of both teams came along in good numbers to support, and Knowle & Dorridge CC were superb hosts.Ian Bell
“It’s great to establish a partnership between Birmingham Bears and Wasps, and to also use the opportunity to raise important funds in Neal’s memory,” said Ian Bell.
“Fans of both teams came along in good numbers to support, and Knowle & Dorridge CC were superb hosts in a central location for both clubs.
“Wasps have some serious cricketers in the squad; Elliot in particular showed good form with the ball as a former Surrey county age-group player.
“Hopefully this will be the start of a great relationship with the two clubs and there will be many more opportunities to work together for great causes in the future.
“On behalf of the players, I would like to thank the supporters of both teams and to everyone involved in the organisation for making it such a great event.”
After posting a score of 237 in their 20 overs, it was Ian Bell’s team that ran out winners on the day, defeating Elliot Daly’s XI by just six runs.
Elliot Daly said: “It was great for us as rugby players to experience playing alongside professional cricketers, and despite the weather not being totally co-operative it was a tremendously enjoyable occasion.
“We were also happy to do our bit in support of two very important charitable causes.
“Quite a few of us played cricket at school or for clubs, and to have the chance to be on the pitch alongside legends of the game like Ian Bell and Jonathan Trott was fantastic.”
Established in 2012, the Neal Abberley Memorial Trophy was created as a tribute to the former Warwickshire batsman and coach who passed away in 2011.