Thursday 16 August 2007 

Harmison Brothers In Arms For Sporting Challenge

Cricket star brothers Steve and Ben Harmison are swapping their Durham County Cricket Club team colours for those that represent the Duke of Northumberland as they are set to make a double-act appearance playing together at The Prince’s Trust Challenge Trophy All Star Twenty20 Cricket Match, in aid of helping the region’s young people.

Ashington born Steve, who is the Duke’s captain on the cricket day, has managed to rope in his 21-year-old younger brother Ben, to play alongside a host of other celebrities at the charity All Star twenty20 Cricket Match that will take place at County Durham Cricket Club on Sunday 2nd September 2007.

Steve and team mate Neil Kileen who is also playing on the day have been working hard to pull in seven senior members of the Durham squad to play on the day including, Gordon Mutchall, Mark Stoneman, Phil Mustard, Graham Onions and Liam Plunkett.

Tickets are now on sale for the celebrity Twenty20 match that sees the North and South of the region go head-to-head under the colours of the team presidents, His Grace, The Duke of Northumberland and The Right Honourable Earl of Durham, Lord Durham.

Durham and England International Steve Harmison said: “The Prince’s Trust Challenge Trophy cricket event is all about raising money for the charity while having a good time. I’m sure Ben and I will enjoy some brotherly banter on the day, we have decided to stay loyal to our Northumberland home town and both play for the ‘Duke’s’ team. There are more and more celebrities coming on board to play on the day so it should be a great day out.”

Celebrities are signing up every day, the two teams revealed are as follows:

Duke of Northumberland: 1st XI players Steve Harmison, Ben Harmison, Gordon Muchall and Mark Stoneman, ex Newcastle United legend Peter Beardsley, Durham boxer Glenn McCrory, Newcastle Falcon’s James Grindal, the BBC’s Jeff Brown, ITV Tyne Tees sports presenter Simon O’Rourke, Magic Radio’s breakfast show presenter Steve Colman and The Journal’s sports reporter Luke Edwards.

Lord Durham: Durham 1st XI players Graham Onions, Liam Plunkett, Neil Killeen and Phil Mustard, ex Newcastle United legend John Beresford, ex Sunderland AFC legends Kevin Ball and Richard Ord, former Newcastle and Sunderland legend Paul Bracewell, Newcastle Falcon’s Tom May, sports presenters Andy Kerr, Simon O’Rouke and Ian Payne, as well as Roger Kennedy.

England captain Paul Collingwood is a non playing team captain for the Earl’s team as overseas commitments prevent him from attending the event.

At the launch of the cricket fixture however, Paul Collingwood said: “I might be a non playing captain but it’s a great event and the aim is to raise as much money as we can for charity.”

The Twenty20 cricket match at the Riverside ground in Durham will involve two squads of 15 celebrities playing for either the Duke or the Earl across the two 1 ½ hour innings.

David Beavis, regional director for The Prince’s Trust, said: “This is fantastic opportunity for families, groups and individuals to enjoy a great day out watching some of the most high profile celebrities playing a cricket game on our home turf whilst contributing towards a great cause. The Riverside ground provides an ideal venue for two teams of celebrities to battle it out in our second round of the Prince’s Trust Challenge Trophy. All proceeds will go directly towards the work The Prince’s Trust does with disadvantaged young people living in the North East.”

Tickets for the cricket are priced at £25 for a family ticket of four, £10 for an individual adult ticket and £5 for a child ticket (under 16 years). DCCC members are entitled to a discount.

After the match, which will be watched by thousands of spectators, corporate attendees will enjoy afternoon tea followed by a trophy presentation on the pitch, plus a twilight supper and charity auction in the evening.

Significant corporate backing has already been pledged from a number of organisations that will sponsor The Prince’s Trust Challenge Trophy in its first year. They are as follows: Esh Group, Stratstone, Northern Rock, Dickinson Dees, Reed Print and Design and NEMS. JJB has signed a kit sponsorship deal.

Media support has been secured with ITV Tyne Tees, Emap - owner of Metro Radio, TFM Radio, Magic Radio, and NCJ and Gazette Media – publisher of The Journal and Evening Gazette.

As well as the All-Star Twenty20 Cricket Match at Durham County Cricket Club on 2nd September the sporting events also include a celebrity amateur clay shoot at Mitford Hall, Northumberland on 24th Sept 2007 and an all-star football match at St James’ Park (date to be confirmed).

On the 2nd September DCCC gates open to the public at 12.00pm, for tickets call the Box Office now on 0870 389 1991 or book online at www.durhamccc.co.uk

For further information details are available now at www.princes-trust.org.uk/trophy.