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Essex cricket team set off on Vatican trip

PUBLISHED: 17:00 12 October 2017

Essex Cricket team before they headed off to Vatican City for a cricket match (Pic: Emdad Rahman)

Essex Cricket team before they headed off to Vatican City for a cricket match (Pic: Emdad Rahman)

Archant

Essex Cricket will embark on a very special trip to play a cricket match in the Vatican City against St. Peter’s Cricket Club this week.

The trip came about through talks with St Peter’s Cricket Club, the Pope’s cricket team from the Vatican City, to support them with their proposed cricket tour to the UK in September 2016, called the Tour of Light.

With over 50 per cent of the Club’s core cricket work being run in very diverse and multi-faith cricket communities, a match against an East London Multi-Faith team was organised soon after the team landed at Stansted Airport on Sunday, September 11.

St Peter’s Cricket Club were very impressed by the whole experience as they played a game against a team that represented 5 different faiths and the hosts, Walthamstow Cricket Club, went out of their way to put on great hospitality.

The day was topped up with two former Essex Captains in attendance, Graham Gooch and the late Doug Insole.

During this summer, Essex Cricket were contacted by Father’s from the Vatican Cricket Team and asked about the possiblity of reciprocating the offer of a Essex Multi-Faith team trip visiting the Vatican, which was gratefully accepted.

The team will depart on today with the match against St. Peter’s Cricket Club taking place on Saturday.

A number of high profile people have supported the trip and cricket in the region:

Prime Minister Teresa May said: “Championing the positive impact that sport can have on people’s lives is the something about which we should remain passionate.

“We should never underestimate the community connections that sport encourages and I am heartened that a shared love for cricket is bringing people of all faiths together in East London.

“I hope Essex Cricket enjoys the trip to the Vatican. I wish everyone involved the very best of luck.”

Ryan ten Doeschate, Essex County cricket club captain, added: “I continue to take a high interest in the community work we support at Essex Cricket.

“I was delighted to understand that we have a representative team visiting the Vatican to play the game we love, as well as share a platform to celebrate so many things we have in common.

“My simple message to everyone that represents Essex Cricket on the trip is to ensure you enjoy this opportunity, wear the shirt with pride and a big thank you for the continued hard work you do for cricket, as it doesn’t go unnoticed.”

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