Inter Parliamentary Cricket World Cup 2019
Legislators from around the cricketing world gathered in London on Tuesday to play a few overs and leave their political troubles behind - but for some, the hope of a break from the stresses of their day jobs proved elusive.
At least two of the eight teams in the first Inter Parliamentary Cricket World Cup found politics following them to the competition in London.
The English team - perhaps inevitably - had to work its timetable around Brexit debates, while Pakistan's players were scolded on social media for travelling abroad to play cricket during a period of austerity.
"I just love cricket - it’s a game that brings so many different people together," said Chris Heaton-Harris, a British MP who organised the tournament.
The event aimed to promote relationships between the parliamentarians and to celebrate the 2019 Cricket World Cup taking place in England and Wales.
The four-day tournament began with MPs from England, Australia, New Zealand, India, Bangladesh, Pakistan and Afghanistan taking to the field.
Most of the players were enthusiastic amateurs but one - Naimur Rahman from Bangladesh - was the first Test captain of his national side.
"It’s really difficult here because when you captain the national team everyone knows the fielding positions, batting orders and position names," he said.
"Here ... it's not so easy."
In a six-overs-a-side warm-up day, varying levels of skill were on display, ranging from brilliant strokes to ignominious dropped catches.
Taking a break from the World Cup proper to support their politicians, body-painted Bangladeshi fans made lots of noise and waved their national flags.
As for who will lift the trophy, Mr Heaton-Harris said Pakistan have been in training camps for quite some time with their national coach and he fancied their chances.
Every day the players will travel to different cricket clubs around London, with the final taking place at Beckenham, an outground for Kent County Cricket Club on Friday
GROUP A GROUP B
UNITED KINGDOM PAKISTAN
AUSTRALIA NEW ZEALAND
AFGHANISTAN ALL STARS
The below fixtures will be played from Tuesday 9th July to Friday 12th July:
Tuesday 9th July - 6 overs-a-side warm-up at Teddington Cricket Club (Bushy Park, Teddington TW11 0EA). This is so that every country is able to play against each other during the week.
TIME PITCH 1 PITCH 2
1000 – 1050 UK vs Pakistan India vs All Stars
1050 – 1140 Australia vs New Zealand Afghanistan vs Bangladesh
1140 – 1230 UK vs All Stars India vs Bangladesh
1230 – 1320 UK vs New Zealand Afghanistan vs Pakistan
1400 – 1450 UK vs Bangladesh Australia vs Pakistan
1450 – 1540 Australia vs All Stars Afghanistan vs New Zealand
1540 – 1620 Afghanistan vs All Stars India vs Pakistan
1620 – 1710 Australia vs Bangladesh India vs New Zealand
Wednesday 10th July – Group Stages, Day 1. 15 overs per side at Chiswick House Cricket Club (Burlington Lane, Chiswick, London W4 2RP)
1000 - 1200 UK vs India
1200 - 1400 Australia vs Afghanistan
1400 – 1600 Bangladesh vs Pakistan
1600 – 1800 All Stars vs New Zealand
Thursday 11th July – Group Stages, Day 2. 15 overs per side at Blackheath Cricket Club- The Rectory (Pitch 1, Charlton Road, Blackheath, London, SE3 7EY) and The Royal Military Academy (Pitch 2, The RMA, Woolwich Common, Woolwich, London, SE18 4AS)
TIME PITCH 1 PITCH 2
1000 – 1215 UK vs Afghanistan All Stars vs Bangladesh
1215 – 1430 Australia vs India New Zealand vs Pakistan
1430 – 1645 India vs Afghanistan New Zealand vs Bangladesh
1645 – 1900 UK vs Australia Pakistan vs All Stars
Friday 12th July – Finals Day. 20 overs per side at Beckenham Cricket Club (Worsley Bridge Road, Beckenham, Kent, BR3 1DR)
1000 – 1300 Semi-final 1: Winner Group A vs Runner-up Group B
1300 – 1600 Semi-final 2: Winner Group B vs Runner-up Group A
1630 – 1930 Final: Winner Semi-final 1 vs Winner Semi-final 2
1930 Presentation (all participants are encouraged to stay)