Chairman of the Al Dhaid Cricket Village Development Committee Walid Bukhatir,
with ECB Administrator Mazhar Khan

Sharjah Cricket Council have opened a seven-ground cricket complex, the Al Dhaid Cricket Village, in the UAE. This move guarantees the future of club cricket in the Dubai-Sharjah area.

Cricketers in Dubai and the neighbouring Emirates were all shocked when the Dubai Cricket Council vacated seven grounds in Al Jadaf in February 2006. A solution was immediately sought by the Emirates Cricket Board and now hundreds of club cricketers have a place to play.

Six of the new grounds are already able to host matches on cement tracks. The remaining ground will have turf by 2008. All of the seven grounds have been built by the Sharjah Cricket Council (SCC) with an investment of US $3 million.

ECMIT played Tilucherry in Al Dhaid’s inaugural fixture

Inaugurating Al Dhaid, Walid Bukhatir said: "The theme of creating such a village is to ensure that people enjoy cricket with their families in lush green surroundings, away from the city. We will have a look at the amount of water available in this area and if possible try and transform the whole village into a green turf".

SCC President Qasim Noorani praised the efforts of Abdulrehman Bukhatir in securing this ground. "For Bukhatir cricket has no boundaries. His love for the game is so much that he has ensured cricket does not stop being played in the UAE due to shortage of venues."

"This is for those who love to play cricket in a peaceful environment with a friendly atmosphere," said Nasir Akram of the SCC. The Al Dhaid Cricket Village is geared to being a family environment with recreation and catering areas for families and spectators who accompany the cricketers to the grounds.

Filed November 18 2006