Following the Afro-Asia Cup and its ‘Cricket for Unity’ theme in Chennai this June, in a gesture which demonstrated the continuing support of the playing squads of Bangladesh and Pakistan for African cricket, a US$5000 donation was made to Ugandan cricket during the Twenty20 quadrangular series in Nairobi, which served as a warm-up for the World Twenty20.

ICC Emirates Elite Panel Match Referee Mike Procter who officiated in Nairobi said, "When you talk about the Spirit of Cricket, well, the players from Bangladesh and Pakistan really displayed it with their gesture. It is about respect for your opponents and that is exactly what the players of these two sides showed with their generosity.  They are among the big boys of world cricket and to help out a country that is still developing in the game is a superb effort."

The Man of the Match cash awards along with the Player of the Series award were pooled and the proceeds handed over at the end of the tournament.

Bangladesh fast bowler Mashrafe Mortaza, explained why the players acted in the way they did. "We donated the money to help Uganda's cricket development," he said. "They are trying hard to improve their game and so far the signs have been encouraging. In a small way we wanted to be a part of the effort to take cricket forward in Uganda. As a Full Member of the ICC I feel we have a responsibility to try and help Associate countries in any way we can."

Filed October 5 2007