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Durham University News

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Durham University sporting excellence on show at The Ashes

(2 August 2013)

Seren Waters, recent Durham University graduate

Seren Waters, recent Durham University graduate

Two Durham University graduates, international cricket stars Nasser Hussain and Andrew Strauss will be playing a major role at the fourth Ashes Test Match, which will be played at Emirates Durham International Cricket Ground for the first time in August.

The two former England Captains, who have played in numerous Ashes test matches on both sides of the globe, will be showcasing their cricketing knowledge and expertise by commentating for a national broadcaster.

A few days after the Men’s fourth Test begins, England cricketer and Durham alumna Holly Colvin, who studied Natural Sciences and attended St. Mary’s College, will be taking part in the Women’s Ashes at Wormsley in Buckinghamshire.

Durham University has a global reputation for developing and nurturing world-class sporting talent, counting several Olympic athletes and well-known sporting stars amongst its alumni.

Cricket is included in the University’s elite sporting programme, and the University was the first in the world to establish a Cricket Centre of Excellence enabling many male and female students to combine academic work and sporting excellence in cricket.

The Durham University Cricket Club has a strong track record of developing players who go onto play professional cricket nationally and internationally.

Andrew Strauss, who studied Economics and attended Hatfield College from 1995-1998, said: “I chose to study at Durham because it has a great sporting background, particularly in cricket and in rugby, and it is also a very highly regarded university.”

Strauss was coached by the University’s Senior Cricket Coach and fellow Durham alumnus Graeme Fowler, himself a former international cricketer best remembered for the 'double-double century' partnership at the 1985 Test in Chennai with Mike Gatting.

Nasser Hussain studied Natural Sciences and attended the College of St. Hild & St. Bede between 1986 - 1989.

Other international sporting stars who have graduated from Durham University include Olympic gold medallist and rower Sophie Hoskings MBE, Paralympic gold medallist and rowing cox Lily van den Broecke, Olympic gold medallist and triple jumper, Jonathan Edwards, and Will Carling, who was the youngest England rugby captain at 22.

Durham University runs an Elite Athlete Support Programme designed to support the very best student athletes in any sporting discipline who are aspiring to compete at under 21 international level and beyond or seeking to secure a professional playing contract upon graduation.

In addition, the University awards approximately 12 sports scholarships per year and all scholarship athletes automatically receive access to the Elite Athlete Support Programme.

The University came second in the 2013 British Universities and Colleges Sport (BUCS) League and approximately 90 per cent of Durham students play in sport at all levels from elite level to college teams.

The University has recently spent £12m on sporting facilities at its sites in Durham and Stockton. Last year it opened a £6.7m world-class sports facility in Durham, including a £1m powered indoor rowing tank, one of only three in the UK and the first in the North of England.

Peter Warburton, Dean of Sport and Director of Experience Durham, said: “Durham University prides itself on enabling students to balance their academic studies with extra-curricular activities such as sport and it is immensely satisfying to see so many of our graduates forging careers in the international sporting arena.”

The Ashes test at Chester-le-Street commences on 9 August 2013.

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