Buxton cricket star heading for States

Rahim Ali, of University of Derby Buxton, who is heading to USA to play cricket.
Rahim Ali, of University of Derby Buxton, who is heading to USA to play cricket.
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A Buxton university student is celebrating after his cricket skills earned him a prestigous spot in a Twenty20 tournament in the United States.

Rahim Ali, a second year undergraduate studying a foundation degree in Sports Coaching, has been chosen to play cricket in this week’s US Open in Florida.

The Open, now in its fifth year, features legends of the game including former India captain Mohammed Azharuddin and Sri Lankan Sanath Jayasuriya, the only player to score over 12,000 runs and take more than 300 wickets in one day internationals.

Rahim, aged 23, will join one of the 40 teams from around the world which the promoters have lined up for this year’s tournament, which starts today and runs until Sunday.

He said: “They are trying to promote cricket in America.

“It will be a world-widening experience.”

Rahim, a former Derbyshire junior player, impressed talent-spotter Raja Arshad while playing for his local team Alvaston and Boulton CC in the Derbyshire Premier League.

He added: “I’ll be in one of the All Star XIs – possibly Pakistan because of my inheritance – but I won’t know until I get there,”

Rahim studies coaching practices for various sports including soccer, American football, basketball and many other activities at the University’s Harpur Hill Leisure Centre and insists that is his main career choice.

He said: “I’m hoping to go into coaching, to put something back into the community.”

His University tutor Omari Williams, senior lecturer for Sport, said: “Rahim is going to be a great ambassador for Buxton. He’s been an outstanding student for us.”

Rahim thanked his family for the support and encouragement in helping him move forward in his sporting career, something his late father always wanted him to do.

He added: “My father would have been one proud man if he was present with us today, he supported me a lot in my sporting career.”