MCC began their touring programme for 2019 this week as a thirteen-man squad departed for Costa Rica and Mexico.
The fourteen-day tour, which will concentrate solely on T20 cricket, will see MCC compete in the Central American Cricket Championship. It is the first of three overseas trips for the Club this year, with visits to Nepal and Sierra Leone planned for later in 2019.
Initially, the squad will travel to Costa Rica, playing three matches against the national team. All three games will be hosted at the Los Reyes Polo Club, located just outside the capital city, San José.
MCC will then head to Mexico, where they will take on the four nations – Belize, Costa Rica, Mexico and Panama – competing in the Central American Championship. This is the seventh edition of the tournament, which MCC won in 2017.
All the games in the tournament, which is played in a round-robin format, will be played at the Reforma Athletic Club. The matches between nations will be played as official T20Is, following ICC’s announcement that, from the beginning of 2019, T20 matches between all ICC Member countries would be granted T20I status.
Graeme Rickman, who has represented MCC across the globe, is the Tour Manager for the trip, whilst Storm Green, an Army Officer in the Coldstream Guards who plays for Andover in the Southern Premier League, will captain MCC throughout the tour.
The squad includes Nadeem Khan, who played both Test and One-Day International cricket for Pakistan. The slow left-armer has over 500 first-class wickets to his name.
In addition, three of the squad have graduated through the MCC Universities scheme. All-rounder Richard Atkins represented Loughborough MCCU, Daniel Lewis-Williams played for Cardiff MCCU in first-class cricket, and Rishi Pandya is a former Leeds/Bradford MCCU player.
MCC Head of Cricket John Stephenson said: “MCC is delighted to be able to send a squad to the Central American Championship. It will be a competitive tournament and one in which we hope to compete successfully.
“The trip is the latest in the Club’s strong tradition for overseas tours, which provides Playing Members with an opportunity to represent the club globally, whilst helping to grow and develop the game in areas less associated with cricket.”
Graeme Rickman – Tour Manager
Storm Green (Andover CC) – Captain
Richard Atkins (New Farnley CC)
Guy Balmford (Brentwood CC)
James Hawley (Cuckney CC)
Thomas Jenkins (Radlett CC)
Clint McCabe (Twickenham CC)
Muhammad Nadeem Khan (RLCA)
Daniel Lewis-Williams (Mumbles CC)
Kez Ahmed (Woodlands CC)
Rishi Pandya (Stanmore CC)
Alistair Ponder (AB Wanderers CC)
Sam Smith (Brondesbury CC)
Chris Vernon (Tenterden CC)
Bob Baxter – Umpire
You can follow updates from the Tour below.