Emburey among stars to play in MCC match

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FORMER England player John Emburey and Strictly Come Dancing personality Anton Du Beke will be lining up on opposite sides in a prestigious cricket match next week.

The professional dancer, who is an enthusiastic cricketer, is a member of the Duchess of Rutland’s X1 who will take on an MCC side at Knipton on Thursday.

Skippered by Belvoir Castle Cricket Trust director Darren Bicknell, the home team also includes ex-county players Scott Boswell (Northants), Jimmy Hindson (Notts), Sam Cliffe (Leics) and Paul Hutchinson (Yorks and Sussex).

Lining up with ex-Middlesex bowler Emburey will be president of the MCC Phillip Hodson, MCC head of cricket John Stephenson, and former Sussex and England player, MCC prersident John Barclay.

Spectators are welcome at the 40-over game, which takes place in the picturesqe surroundings of Belvoir Cricket Club’s Knipton ground.

The fixture is the third between MCC and an XI representing the Duchess, who is patron of the Trust.

The MCC is a major supporter of the work of the charitable trust, which this year alone expects to offer activities for about 2,500 disadvantaged youngsters, some getting their first taste of the countryside and others being introduced to sport for the first time.

Bicknell said: “MCC gives money to the trust each year and this annual fixture is our way of saying thank you. We enjoy a game of cricket, and then in the evening there is a dinner at Belvoir Castle.

“It’s a really good day and the cricket is quite competitive, especially as each team has won one of the previous games. Members of the public are more than welcome to come and watch. There’s a bar all day and the match is played in a fabulous setting.”

There is no charge to see the game and it starts at 12.30pm.