The International Cricket Council (ICC) has named eight stellar players of international cricket as the Champion Ambassadors for the Champions Trophy that will be held in the UK from June 1-18, it announced through a media release on Wednesday. (IPL 2017 FULL COVERAGE)
Shahid Afridi of Pakistan, Bangladesh’s Habibul Bashar, Ian Bell of England, Shane Bond of New Zealand, Australia’s Mike Hussey, India’s Harbhajan Singh, Kumar Sangakkara of Sri Lanka and Graeme Smith of South Africa were honoured as ambassadors with exactly 50 days to go for the tournament opener between England and Bangladesh at The Oval in London.
Harbhajan Singh, member of the India team that shared the 2002 trophy with Sri Lanka in Colombo, said: “To be appointed as an Ambassador for a global event in which India will be the defending champion is one of the highs for me as a cricketer and something to be really proud of.
“I look forward to playing my role to promote and publicise this thrilling and exciting ICC event, and will also closely follow India’s performance. I am confident that team india will achieve greater heights and am sure that millions of fans back home will be following the side’s fortunes.”
The eight cricketers will be involved in the ICC Champions Trophy Trophy Tour and will also make take part in the Cricket for Good coaching clinics, a programme aimed at providing school children with an opportunity to meet and play with legends.
They will also be part of the ICC editorial team. ICC Chief Executive and former South Africa wicketkeeper 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.”
Between them, the eight players have 1,774 One-Day Internationals, scoring 51,906 runs with 48 centuries, and taking 838 wickets.