The Assupol Tuks cricket team will be heading to India in a quest to defend their Red Bull Campus Cricket world title in a tournament which will take place from 19-24 October in Dehradun, India. The Red Bull Campus Cricket competition is an annual initiative focused on developing university cricket on an international platform by inviting national champions from various countries to compete against each other for the world title.
This year the tournament will see India, Australia, South Africa, Pakistan, England, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and the United Arab Emirates competing in a twenty-over (T20) format. The UP team will have a tough challenge ahead in an attempt to live up to their label as defending champions. High expectations surround the team after a successful 2015 season where they secured the USSA title as well as the first instalment of the Varsity Cricket competition. TuksCricket head coach Pierre de Bruyn will have drawn attention to the team after he was recently awarded Coach of the Year at the 2015 Gauteng Sports Awards.
The team will have to deal with unfamiliar sub-continental conditions in India. They are, however, prepared for this challenge after receiving assistance from South African cricket legend Shaun Pollock, who advised them on how to excel in such a tournament.
The team will comprise of some of the players who competed in the tournament in England last year, and will hope to draw from these experiences. “We have done a lot of preparation in terms of the things you can control, but going that side we are expecting a tough tournament. We are the defending champions, which puts a target on our back. Although we expect some tough cricket, at the same time it is nice to be challenged,” said captain Aiden Markram.
Image: Blanche Conradie