Players from across the Western Hemisphere attempt to secure a spot on ICC Americas team
The International Cricket Council (ICC) welcomes players from the United States, Canada, Argentina, Bermuda, Suriname and the Cayman Islands to Indianapolis this week, to begin the first-ever ICC Americas Cricket Combine.
The event will take place September 19-21 and September 25-27 at the World Sports Park. Invited players will demonstrate their skills in front of international and regional coaches in an attempt to earn a spot on the ICC Americas team to compete in the West Indies Cricket Board's (WICB) Nagico Super 50 tournament in January.
"As interest in cricket in the USA and surrounding countries continues to grow, so does the level of cricket talent," said Tom Evans, ICC Americas High Performance Consultant.
"By embracing the Combine model, we're able to evaluate players based on individual skills and team play in a format which allows us to assemble the best possible team to represent our international region."
The Combine will take place in two phases. Phase One (September 19-21) will consist of invited players who completed an online screening process; they will compete for invitations to Phase Two (September 25-27).
At the conclusion of Phase Two, Combine officials, including ICC Hall of Fame inductee and former West Indies captain Courtney Walsh, former Indian international Venkatapathy Raju and internationally renowned American fielding coach Mike Young, will select a roster to play in the Nagico Super 50 tournament in January 2016. Following the tournament, the best players may have an opportunity to try out for teams in the Caribbean Premier League (CPL).
During Phase One, coaches will see 83 players demonstrate their athletic abilities and cricket skills at batting, fielding and bowling. For a full roster of Phase One participants visit the ICC Americas website.
Canada's Trevor Manoosingh will take part in Phase One, and said:
"I'm looking forward to taking part in this weekend's activities with the ultimate hope of being selected for Phase Two. I think it's a great initiative by the ICC and hope this is the start of many more Combines."
Other prospects include players from diverse backgrounds including former baseball standouts attempting to transition, as well as Ryan Carter, a Phase One invitee and former lacrosse player from Butler University, located less than 10 miles from the Combine's grounds at the World Sports Park in Indianapolis.
"I was pleasantly surprised to find out the Combine was in Indianapolis. I live so close, and had spent my college years there so it made it an easy decision to apply," said Carter. "Transitioning from lacrosse to cricket has not been easy, but learning the sport is a challenge that I enjoy. To be invited to Indy, and compete with the best talent in the region is an incredible opportunity I couldn't pass up."
In addition to developing talented players, several regional coaches will be also be involved in the Combine.
"Learning from coaches like Courtney Walsh, Mike Young and Venkatapathy Raju is an incredible opportunity for not only the players but the coaches as well," said Anand Tummala current local coach based in Illinois.
"Development is an important pillar of all the top cricketing nations and we'll need great players and great coaches to grow the game in the Americas."
The schedule for Phase One and Phase Two is as follows; all events will take place at World Sports Park at 1313 S. Post Road, Indianapolis, IN, unless otherwise noted:
All times in Eastern Daylight Time (UTC -4:00)
* Saturday, Sept. 19: Fitness and skills testing from 9 a.m. ? 1 p.m. and 2-5 p.m.
* Sunday, Sept. 20: Twenty20 matches 9 a.m. ? Noon and 1-4 p.m.
* Monday, Sept. 21: Twenty20 match including top 24 players
* Thursday, Sept. 24: Media event at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway at 4 p.m.
* Friday, Sept. 25: ICC Fan Event with select players and coaches at the Marriott East in Indianapolis at 6:30 p.m. Public is welcome.
* Friday, Sept. 25 ? Sunday, Sept. 27: Twenty20 and 50 over cricket matches from 9 a.m. ? 4 p.m. daily.
For updates from the ICC Americas Combine, please follow: @iccamericas> and @ICC
For media inquiries, contact Lauren Schregardus (Lauren@barcommunications.com or +1-317-416-7246) or Brad Rateike (Brad@barcommunications.com or +1-317-508-8419).