Emirates Cricket’s highly-popular ‘UAE Academy Cricket U17 League’ 2017/2018 season draws to a close with its finals to be played tomorrow, Saturday, February 10th (2018).


Saturday’s finals will start at 8.30am, at Al Bataya ground, and will see Young Talent Cricket Academy and Victoria Cricket Academy compete for the Plate. Followed by the highly anticipated Cup final between Desert Cubs Cricket Academy (Sharjah) and Zayed Cricket Academy, which will be played at the Cubs home ground of Sharjah English School at 1pm.


Played over a six-month period, the 30-over, white ball league gave 15-teams, from UAE’s established Cricket Academies, a solid platform to showcase their talent, and provide selectors with the opportunity to identify individuals that can progress through the system and be considered for selection into UAE’s U16 and U19 representative squads.


“Emirates Cricket is very proud to include this league in its annual domestic (playing) calendar.”  commented Waleed Bukhatir, Emirates Cricket Board Member and Chief Selector.  “This tournament is an integral part of our player pathway programme whereby top players can be identified and streamlined into quality, competitive cricket. We are encouraged to have so many young cricketers compete, and see them set their sights firmly on possible selection into UAE representative teams. We wish all teams the best in their respective Plate and Cup matches.” added Abbas


Ahead of the Cup final, Presley Polonnowita, Founder and Head Coach of Desert Cubs stated; “This tournament is a lovely initiative and has created a stage for all capable youngsters to show their talent against top academies. With monitored performance, their chance of being noticed and represent UAE U16 and U19 greatly increases, and we would like to thank Emirates Cricket for their efforts. We are excited for the final and we are proud to host it on our home ground.” With Raees Ayan, Zayed Cricket Academy Captain commenting that; “We are excited to play in our second successive League final and attempt retain this prestigious title. “The emphasis in our camp has been on teamwork; ‘together we can achieve more’ and it really has worked well for us. All we need now is a final push to get us over the line. Hopefully we can do it.”         


Andrew Russell, National Development Manager, Emirates Cricket said; “There has been some exceptional individual and team performances throughout this season, and every team has been competitive. From what we have seen (through this tournament), we are very excited with the future talent on offer and we are confident UAE’s most established and well-revered academies have found immense value in taking part, and we thank them for their unwavering support.”