The Australian High Commission (AHC) and the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) with the support of Serena Hotels today hosted the 5th AHC-PCB Girls’ Cricket Cup at F-9 Cricket Ground, Islamabad.
Australia’s Acting High Commissioner to Pakistan, Mr Brek Batley, congratulated the schools on their participation and welcomed the continued support of the PCB and Serena Hotels for the annual AHC-PCB Girls’ Cricket Cup.
“The Australian High Commission has been sponsoring girls’ cricket in Pakistan since May 2016 to promote gender equality through sport. We began with a single annual tournament in Islamabad but expanded in Lahore and Karachi this year,” Mr Batley said.
“Our countries share a passion for cricket, so we’re very pleased to support this event. Cricket and other sports can help tear down barriers and stereotypes. Every time these girls hit a boundary or make a catch, they are taking a step towards greater equality,” he said.
The girls attended a five-day coaching clinic in the lead-up to the competition conducted by PCB first class cricket coaches and the Manager of Pakistan Women’s Emerging Squad, Fizza Abid.
Mr Batley highlighted that Australia will host the 2020 ICC Women’s T20 World Cup final on International Women’s Day. At the tournament, Australia will become the first cricketing nation to close the gender gap in prizemoney –Cricket Australia will top up any prizemoney won by the Australian team to ensure parity with men’s winnings.
Mr Aziz Boolani, CEO Serena Hotels, said, “Cricket is a passion in Pakistan and as a sport it embodies all the best attributes of any game – encouraging teamwork, discipline, hard work and strategic thinking. Under Serena Hotels Sports Diplomacy initiatives we support, facilitate and sponsor numerous sporting events and our commitments to sports diplomacy and women’s empowerment have found expression in the AHC-PCB Girls’ Cricket Cup. This tournament provides a wonderful vehicle for promoting and highlighting the importance of gender equality in sport.”
The AHC-PCB Girls’ Cup Islamabad involved teams from four schools: SOS Children’s Village H-11, Sky School System F-11/3, Islamabad Model School for Girls G-11/1 and Islamabad Model School for Girls I-9/1 Islamabad.
This year’s competition was also supported by Malik Sports through the donation of cricket equipment and the Capital Development Authority which provided the ground facilities.