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Developing Samoan cricket

LAUREN PRIESTLEY
Last updated 07:27 30/01/2013
Ian West
HARD HITTER: Ian West of St Heliers will be representing Samoa next week in the East-Asia Pacific Twenty20 cricket tournament.

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Ian West will be the only non-Samoan playing for the national Samoan cricket team in the East-Asia Pacific Twenty20 tournament next week.

The 28 year old was born in England and played premier cricket there before moving to play in Australia where he met former Samoan netballer Lana Williams. The pair married and now live in St Heliers.

Cricketers need to have contribute 100 days of cricket development in Samoa and hold a Samoan passport to trial for the national team.

The aim is to improve Samoan cricket, Mr West says.

He lived in Samoa for six months last year running a high performance cricket programme which has seen more than 100 players trial for the national team.

"The lifestyle over there means you get fit and healthy without trying. They have got so much potential. If we give them an opportunity in cricket they could go a long way."

Half of Mr West's team are based in New Zealand and half live in Samoa.

He's looking forward to the tournament and has high hopes for them.

"We're not the favourite by a long stretch but we have got the ability to spring a bit of an upset. Cricket is a funny game so who knows what will happen."

THE TOURNAMENT The International Cricket Council East-Asia Pacific (ICC EAP) Twenty20 tournament is on at Waikaraka Park from February 3 to 7. The team that wins the ICC EAP Trophy will go on to play in the ICC World Twenty20 qualifier in October. Teams will play warm-up games at Lloyd Elsmore Park, Pakuranga on January 31, and at Colin Maiden Park, St Johns on February 1. Go to icc-cricket.com for more information.

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- East And Bays Courier

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