Founded in 1993, the MCC Foundation is the charitable arm of Marylebone Cricket Club and aims to transform lives through cricket.
We deliver projects across the UK and around the world that use cricket to empower young people to reach their full potential, to unite and inspire communities, and to promote physical and mental well-being.
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Click here to find out about our projects across the UK.
Click here to learn about our work overseas.
Click here to see the projects we run in our local community.
Dr Sarah Fane OBE - Director
Sarah studied Medicine at Bristol University. As a medical student and doctor, she travelled extensively in Pakistan and Afghanistan supporting health for women and children during both the Soviet-Afghan War in the eighties and under the Taliban regime in 2001.
These visits and the people she met inspired her to set up a charity, Afghan Connection, in 2002. Over 18 years, the charity supported some 500,000 children with Health, Education and Cricket in Afghanistan, building and renovating 130 schools and training more than 1,000 teachers.
In partnership with MCC, alongside the meteoric rise of the Afghanistan National Cricket Team, Afghan Connection delivered cricket projects to more than 150,000 young people. It built 110 pitches in schools and disability centres and provided coaching to teachers and young people across the war-torn country.
As a result of her work to promote and nurture the cricketing scene in Afghanistan, Sarah was made an Honorary Life Member of MCC in 2012. She received an OBE in 2013, in recognition for her work in Afghanistan.
Sammy Love - Operations Director
Sammy has been with the Foundation since January 2018. Her role includes data analysis, programme development, fundraising, and communications.
Prior to her role at the Foundation, Sammy read History at Christ's College Cambridge, taught English in Hong Kong, and worked for a boutique travel start-up in Prague.
She is passionate about opening up access to sport, and alongside her work at the Foundation volunteers with London's largest netball club to develop outreach programmes to support state-educated young netballers across the capital.
During her time with the Foundation, some of her favourite memories have included organising a successful world record attempt to play the longest indoor cricket marathon (31hr 27m of continuous play), and witnessing England's iconic World Cup victory in 2019.
Reece Bird - National Hub Manager
Reece Bird joined the MCC Foundation in August 2014 as the MCCF National Cricket Hub Manager. Reece brings a wealth of cricketing knowledge to the Foundation from his previous ten years' experience as County Cricket Development Manager for Yorkshire Cricket.
In his current role, he oversees the Hub programmes across the UK, ensuring high-quality coaching and effective programme management. Reece is an active ECB Tutor, ECB Level 3 Head coach & Pathways lead coach who has a passion to develop players and new coaches. He also sits on the MCC Youth sub-committee.
Suse Harrison - Finance Officer
Suse Harrison joined the MCC Foundation in April 2020. She spent the first nine years of her career at Lloyd’s of London, as an Assistant Underwriter specialising in US medical and legal malpractice reinsurance. She then took up an opportunity to race a yacht around the world in the BT Global Challenge. On her return in 1997 she helped set up the luxury ski chalet business Descent International, being fully responsible for the financial side of the business which grew to a turnover of £3m.
Following some time at home raising her children she returned to work in 2016, managing finance first at a biochemical firm and then at Afghan Connection, a charity which supported Education and Cricket in Afghanistan.
Phillip Hodson - Chairman
Phillip studied at Downing College, Cambridge and played cricket for the University. He has also played for Yorkshire CCC, and represented MCC in over 300 matches. Phillip was President of MCC in 2011/12 and is currently President of Scarborough CC. He was CEO of Oval Insurance Group from 2003 to 2012 and still has interests in the property and financial services sector.
Matthew Kirkby - Treasurer
Matthew studied at Pembroke College, Oxford where he captained the college cricket side. He is a qualified lawyer who spent most of the last 25 years in the banking industry predominantly in Asia. Matthew currently sits on a number of company boards. In the Not for Profit sector, he has been involved for the last ten years in programmes aimed at increasing access to Universities from applicants from lower socioeconomic and minority backgrounds.
Charlotte Appleyard is Director of Development & Business Innovation at the Royal Academy of Arts. She previously worked at Outset Contemporary Art Fund, and in the curatorial departments at The National Gallery in London and the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.
In 2012 she published "Corporate Art Collections: A Handbook" a history and survey of corporate collections. She served as a trustee of Turner Contemporary and the ICA and currently sits on the advisory board of the Centre for Entrepreneurs and the Evening Standard London Recovery Board. She is a graduate of Oxford University, the Courtauld Institute and Harvard Business School.
Paul plays a pivotal role at ECB providing support to the cricket network. As a Trustee, Paul brings his knowledge of MCC Tours and ECB funding for Counties, Clubs, and Leagues, to help the Foundation invest in effective projects. He brought the idea and outline plans for MCC Foundation Hubs to the attention of the Director and Trustees, and was actively involved in the Pilot programme. As a player he captained his local club Cranleigh before moving on to captain and open the batting for Wimbledon. Higher cricketing honours include captaining the 1998 MCC A tour to East & Central Africa and managing the 2006 MCC tour to Argentina. He has also served as Area Representative for MCC London Suburban region and as Chairman of the Surrey Championship.
Varun Chandra is the global managing partner of Hakluyt, which advises leaders of the world’s largest companies and investment firms on the opportunities and risks facing their businesses.
Prior to joining Hakluyt, Varun read Philosophy, Politics and Economics at Magdalen College Oxford, trained at Lehman Brothers, and went on to help build a regulated advisory firm for former UK Prime Minister Tony Blair, where he was responsible for transactions typically involving sovereign wealth and emerging markets businesses. He has also co-founded a merchant bank with a private family investment company; advised a UK foreign secretary on business and economic issues; written for various political publications; and invested in a number of early-stage companies.
In addition to his work with the MCC Foundation, Varun sits on the board of Sesame Workshop, the world’s leading early learning media platform. He previously chaired the associate board of The Opportunity Network in New York, was a trustee of Afghan Connection, and completed a five-year term as a governor of an inner-city London primary school. He was selected by the World Economic Forum as a Global Shaper, sat on the steering committee of the Milken Institute’s Young Leaders’ Circle, and was an inaugural fellow of the Forward Institute.
Clare Connor CBE
Clare is a former England cricket captain who retired from playing for England in 2006 with over 100 international caps and having led the team for 6 years. At the age of 30, she was awarded the OBE after leading England to a first Ashes win in 42 years. She was then awarded the CBE for services to women’s sport in the 2018 New Year’s Honours List.
Clare is now Managing Director of Women’s Cricket at the England & Wales Cricket Board, driving a period of significant change and growth for the women’s game. She has also been Chair of the International Cricket Council’s Women’s Cricket Committee since 2011.
Clare has enjoyed a dynamic career outside cricket. For 7 years, she combined playing for England whilst teaching English at Brighton College and heading up the school’s PR & Marketing operations. Clare has also worked in the cricket media, presenting for Channel 4 Cricket, summarising for Test Match Special, writing a column in The Observer and as a guest on Sky Sport’s coverage of international cricket.
In October 2021, Clare will become the first female President of the MCC in its 233-year history.
Mehmooda Duke MBE
Mehmooda is the founder and CEO of Moosa – Duke Solicitors, specialising in medical negligence claims.
In May 2019, she became Chair of Leicestershire County Cricket Club, making her the first female in English Cricket to Chair a First Class County. She was also the first Asian female in the 155-year history of Leicestershire Law Society to be President.
Mehmooda is the founder and Chair of ‘Leading Ladies’, a membership organisation made up of professional and non - professional women of all generations. The aim is to inspire, mentor, coach and support one another to ‘dream big and fly high’.
Mehmooda was awarded an MBE in the New Year Honours List 2019 for services to the Legal Profession and female entrepreneurship.
Tony studied at Pembroke College, Cambridge where he coxed for the university and captained the college cricket side. He is the current MCC Treasurer, having previously been treasurer of Gloucestershire County Cricket Club. Prior to his retirement in 2009, Tony was with PricewaterhouseCoopers where he was a tax partner for 21 years. He has been a member of MCC since 1972 and has held various positions in the charity sector over the last 30 years.
Rick studied at the University of London. Having played cricket for Surrey at most age groups, at university he was elected a playing member of MCC and toured with the Club to Cayman Islands and Belize. A serial tourist, he has organised and participated on numerous tours. He has been chairman of two cricket clubs and over the last four years has pioneered a community approach to cricket development at Cranleigh Cricket Club. His other passions include serving on the committee of the Arabs Cricket Club and the governing body of Cranleigh School.
Roger Knight OBE
Roger Knight studied at St Catharine's College, Cambridge, during which time he gained four cricket Blues. He played first-class cricket for fourteen years, whilst teaching modern languages during the winters, and went on to captain Surrey CCC for six years. After becoming a boarding housemaster at Cranleigh School, he was appointed as headmaster of Worksop College. In 1994 he became the thirteenth Secretary of MCC and the first Secretary & Chief Executive, when the job title changed. After retiring in 2006, he became Chairman of the European Cricket Council, Chairman of the ECB Association of Cricket Officials, President of Cambridge University CC and Chairman of Governors of King's College, Taunton. Roger also served as the President of MCC in 2016.
Dr Samir Pathak
Samir was educated at Hymers College in Hull. He subsequently attended Liverpool Medical School and graduated as a Doctor in 2006. Samir is in his final year of training now as a liver and pancreatic surgeon and also works as an academic clinical lecturer at the University of Bristol.
Samir has captained his University, played for England Universities as a keeper-batsman and is a playing member of the MCC.
Daniel Peltz OBE
Daniel Peltz is CEO of London Freeholds Ltd following a career in property and asset management with both GUS and British Land. He is an Honorary Fellow of both King's College and Birkbeck College. He sits on the King's Campaign Board and is the co-lead on the King's Mental Health Initiative. He also sits on the Estates Committees of both King's and Birkbeck Colleges. He is Chairman of Technion UK and is a Trustee and Treasurer of The Anna Freud Centre. He is also a Trustee of Warburg Institute's Charitable Trust, The National Gallery Trust Foundation, The Oxford Centre for Hebrew and Jewish Studies at Oxford University, The Institute of Jewish Studies at UCL and The City of London School Bursary Trust. He is currently a panellist on the Education Panel of The Wolfson Foundation, and sits on the Estates and Arts & Library Committees of the MCC. In 2015, he was awarded the OBE for Philanthropic and Charitable services.
The MCC Foundation is proud to be supported by:
Mike Atherton OBE
Claire Taylor MBE
Mike Brearley OBE
Mike Gatting OBE
Archie Kalyana - Special Media Advisor
As our Special Media Advisor, Archie helps us share the stories of the young people around the world whose lives have been transformed through cricket.
Archie has 25 years of media production experience and is the Diversity Producer at BBC Sport Cricket. She is passionate about diversity in cricket and is using her influence and reach to change the landscape of sports broadcasting. Last year she was appointed as a Special Advisor on International Affairs to the Yuvraj Singh Foundation and is a trustee for Street Child United.
In 2019 she also won the Asian Women of Achievement of Award in the Sport category, and is an advocate for women in the industry.
Will is a grassroots and village cricketer and has also enjoyed the opportunity to play at higher levels including a tour to Sri Lanka. It was here that he saw first-hand the enormous impact that cricket can have on the lives of those less fortunate than himself.
In 2020, aged 15, he founded Bat For a Chance, a young and exciting cricket charity which provides kit to underprivileged players across the world, and helps to grow the game more widely. Bat For a Chance has a mission to bring smiles to players, offering an escape from hardship through the game. Bat for a Chance has already provided kit for cricketers in Uganda, Rwanda, Sierra Leone, Sri Lanka, and the West Indies, and is supporting the MCC Foundation’s projects in the UK and overseas.
Cordelia is a professional cricketer for the Sunrisers, Middlesex CCC, and the Manchester Originals, and is completing the Legal Practice Course with the University of Law.
She started her cricketing journey at Essex CCC, making her debut for the Women’s 1st XI at the age of 13 and taking on the captaincy in 2016.
She has also been involved in the England Women’s Pathway, having first been selected for the U17s tour to South Africa aged 13. She represented and captained the England U19s squad and also played for the England Women’s Senior Academy for a number of years, including international fixtures against Sri Lanka and Pakistan. In 2016, she made the decision to withdraw from the England pathway to focus on her legal studies.
Mumtaz Habib is a British Diplomat at the Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office focused on the Middle East and South East Asia.
Mumtaz came to the UK at the age of 14 as refugee from Afghanistan. Shortly after his arrival he learned to play cricket at Harrow Town Cricket Club. He was awarded a scholarship to Harrow School and then went on to study at Durham University where he represented Durham University Cricket Club for three years. Mumtaz was the first Afghan to represent Harrow School at Lord’s against Eton and the second Afghan to play First Class cricket.
Mumtaz is passionate about girls’ education in Afghanistan and has been involved with the charities Afghan Connection and the Afghan Appeal Fund.
Harry is a Senior Account Manager at M&C Saatchi World Services, working on behavioural change and social impact campaigns in East Africa and the Middle East. With a keen interest in sports of all kinds, Harry is also a freelance sportswriter and has had by-lines in The Guardian, The Times and The Independent. Harry recently took part in a global UN consultation which aimed at tackling violent extremism through sport, and has previously acted as a communications adviser for the charity, Afghan Connection. As a Young Ambassador, Harry advises the Foundation on its communications strategy.
Ajmal is an ex-cricketing professional who has played cricket for over 15 years. He made his First-Class debut in 2004 as the first British-born Asian to have ever represented Yorkshire County Cricket Club.
During his playing career, he represented England across all formats notably featuring in the 2010-11 Ashes series, the 2010 T20 World Cup and the 2011 50-Over World Cup in India. Domestically, he spent the majority of his career playing for Yorkshire County Cricket Club before moving on to play for Lancashire, Nottinghamshire and Sussex County Cricket Clubs.
After stepping away from playing cricket in 2016, he embarked on a coaching career. In 2019, he was appointed Head Coach of MCC, and he now coaches at Derbyshire CCC.
We are most grateful to all the companies, trusts and individuals listed below (and those who wish to remain anonymous) who currently support us, and to those who have given generously in the past.
Without them, we could not use cricket to transform and improve people’s lives.
Alan and Irene Halsall
Eric M Young and Family
Felix Byam Shaw Foundation
Geoffrey de Jager
Glamorgan Followers Club
I.R.K. Maclaren Settlements
In Memory of Gerald and Pamela Williams
In Memory of Michael Melluish
Jan Wulf van Alkemade
Peter Stormonth Darling
Reigate Priory C.C.
Rick and Melissa Johnson
The Cricket Society Trust
The Derek Raphael Charitable Trust
The Dowley Charitable Trust
The Garfield Weston Foundation
The Holbeck Trust
The John Swire Charitable Trust
The Loveday Charitable Trust
We would also like to extend our gratitude to the following schools and venues who support the Hubs programme by offering us free, or significantly discounted, facility hire:
Aldridge Cricket Academy
Bradford Grammar School
The Cotswold School
Magdalene College School
Mount Kelly Boarding and Day School
Nottingham High School
St Dunstan’s College
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