The International Cricket Council (ICC) today announced Warwickshire skipper Ian Bell as one of eight stalwarts of the modern era as Champion Ambassadors for this summer’s ICC Champions Trophy, which will be staged at Edgbaston, The Oval and the Cardiff Wales Satdium from 1-18 June.
Shahid Afridi of Pakistan, Bangladesh’s Habibul Bashar, Australia’s Mike Hussey, Graeme Smith of South Africa, India’s Harbhajan Singh and former Bears Kumar Sangakkara of Sri Lanka and Shane Bond of New Zealand join Bell as the Ambassadors with exactly 50 days to go before the first ball is bowled in the tournament opener between England and Bangladesh at The Oval.
Judging by the players due to be on show, the Champions Trophy is no doubt going to be a stunning competition and I’m certain the amazing fans over here will get behind it like they always do with sport in this country.Ian Bell
The eight Ambassadors between them have played 1,774 One-Day Internationals, scoring 51,906 runs with 48 centuries, and taking 838 wickets.
The Champion Ambassadors will be involved in the ICC Champions Trophy Nissan Trophy Tour and will also make appearances in the UK as part of an inspiring programme aimed at providing school children with an opportunity to meet and play with a legend at the Cricket For Good coaching clinics.
In addition to this, the eight cricketers will be part of a strong ICC editorial team and will provide match previews and match analysis through exclusive columns which will be available on the ICC website at www.icc-cricket.com for free download and editorial use.
ICC Chief Executive David Richardson said: “With 50 days to go to the Champions Trophy, we are delighted to announce these eight outstanding cricketers as our Champion Ambassadors. The programme will connect these greats of the game with a new generation of fans and players through our Cricket For Good project and leave a real lasting legacy for the sport.
“The team will also bring great insight and expertise to fans via the ICC website and I’m sure we will all enjoy reading their analysis and opinions on 15 games during the Champions Trophy.”
Ian Bell, who scored 91 against Australia in the ICC Champions Trophy 2013, said: “I’m absolutely delighted to have been asked to become an Ambassador for the host country of the ICC Champions Trophy. This is going to be a fantastic summer of cricket over here in the UK and I’m honoured to be involved.
“Judging by the players due to be on show, the Champions Trophy is no doubt going to be a stunning competition and I’m certain the amazing fans over here will get behind it like they always do with sport in this country.
“I’m looking forward to writing some columns and giving my thoughts throughout the tournament and also getting to as much as cricket as I can!”
Edgbaston hosts five games in the ICC Champions Trophy 2017,
- Australia v New Zealand, Friday 2 June
- India v Pakistan, Sunday 4 June
- Pakistan v South Africa, Wednesday 7 June
- England v Australia, Saturday 10 June
- Semi-Final, Thursday 15 June
A limited number of tickets remain available for the ICC Champions Trophy at Edgbaston.