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Maddy's MCC tourist take on Namibia

Former England batsman Darren Maddy leads a strong MCC party for a five match tour of Namibia, departing on Thursday 27 January.

The tourists play four 50-over fixtures - including two against the Namibia national team - and a three day match against an Invitational XI.

Maddy’s experienced squad features seasoned county performers such as Gloucestershire wicket-keeper Jonathan Batty and ex-Nottinghamshire batsman Darren Bicknell.

Former MCC Young Cricketer Will Gidman and Sussex spinner Ollie Rayner are two of the less experienced members of an eclectic touring party.

Also included is 27-year-old seamer David Wade whom Gloucestershire have signed from the Army for the 2011 season.

Wade represented the Army at last season's inter-services Twenty20 tournament at Lord's. This season's competition returns to the Home of Cricket on Tuesday 20 June.

Assisting development

The primary objective of the tour is to support the development of top level and grassroots cricket in a strong, emerging cricketing nation.

As part of MCC’s Tour Policy, the squad will also take part in three coaching sessions at local schools, in the capital Windhoek and Walvis Bay.

MCC Head of Cricket John Stephenson hopes the tour will benefit both MCC and Namibian cricket.

He said: "MCC is committed to increasing the international appeal of cricket and the Club’s relationship with Namibia forms an important part of developing talent in emerging nations.

"As a result we have sent a strong squad which we hope will provide challenging opposition for the talented Namibian players.

"By also committing to coaching sessions for school cricketers we hope to make an impact on all levels of cricket in the country.

"I am sure that the tour will be a rewarding experience for all involved."

Strong history

This is the third time MCC has toured Namibia in the past 20 years with the most recent trip taking place in 2005.

Namibia has been an ICC Associate Member since 1992 and qualified for the 2003 ICC World Cup in neighbouring South Africa.

The current Namibia side finished 2010 on a high after beating the UAE to lift the ICC Intercontinental Shield in December.

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