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Minister for Sport praises England Disability squads

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Hugh Robertson Disability Reception

Minister of State for Sport, the Rt Hon Hugh Robertson (left), was guest of honour at this week's reception, attended by England's disability squads and ECB chief executive David Collier (right)

Members of the England Disability Cricket squads attended a Parliamentary Reception at the House of Commons earlier this week to celebrate the success of ECB’s disability cricket programme.

The Minister of State for Sport, the Rt Hon Hugh Robertson, was guest of honour at the event which was also attended by ECB Chief Executive David Collier and MPs from the All Party Cricket Group.

The event was designed to recognise the achievements of disabled cricketers from the England Physical Disability, England Learning Disability, England Deaf and England Blind squads – with each squad captain receiving a commemorative picture from Hugh Robertson to mark the occasion.

All four squads are benefiting from the introduction of a national strategy for disability cricket which is continuing to flourish with a nine per cent increase in participation recorded last year across the wider club network and 43,000 disabled children given opportunities to play through the Chance to Shine programme.

Minister for Sport Hugh Robertson said: “I congratulate the work of the ECB and the England Disability Cricket squads for their achievements to date. It’s fantastic that the ECB is increasing participation among disabled people at all levels of the sport. I hope its work in this area continues to go from strength to strength.”

ECB Chief Executive David Collier added: “This has been a momentous year for disability cricket in this country as we continue to reap the benefit of sustained investment into the sport at both grass-roots and elite level.

“The highlights include the Learning Disability squad winning their tri-series in South Africa last winter and the staging of the first ever Physical Disabilities international between England and Pakistan in the UAE earlier this year.

“It’s marvellous to get national recognition for our England disability teams and we would like to thank Hugh Robertson in particular for his support, Sport England, and the All Party Cricket Group for continuing to be such strong backers of our disability cricket programme.”