Locals share their lives with Australian cricketers in the UAE | Cricket Australia

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Locals share their lives with Australian cricketers in the UAE

October 06, 2018

Mitchell Starc poses for a photo at the Al Naboodah Village in Aweer // Getty

By cricketaustralia.com.au

Australian cricketers today visited one of Dubai’s largest labour camp facilities to experience how workers live, and hear stories of sacrifices they have made for their families.

Tim Paine, Mitch Marsh, Peter Siddle, Travis Head, Mitch Starc, Brendan Doggett, Ashton Agar, Marnus Labuschagne, Michael Neser, Jon Holland and Justin Langer took time out from the Qantas Tour of the UAE to hear from locals who live at the  Al Naboodah Village in Aweer as part of the Cricket Cares program.

More than 7,500 workers currently reside in the complex hailing from India, Bangladesh and Pakistan.

The visitors heard about the extreme challenges the workers have faced, and the crucial role cricket plays in providing an outlet in the camp.

Around 70% of the residents at the camp are unskilled labourers.  

A number of labour camps have been set up across the United Arab Emirates to service the thriving metropolis, with many workers opting to live in camps and going for years on end without seeing their family, whilst sending income back home to their loved ones. 

The cricketers toured the facilities, played cricket with the residents, joined them for afternoon tea and signed a graffiti wall as a gift to the camp.

The Australian Ambassador to the UAE, HE Arthur Spyrou also joined the team during the activities.

Through Cricket Australia’s official charity partners, Movember, the McGrath Foundation and the Alannah & Madeline Foundation, individual player charities, disaster relief efforts, and broader community work, the Cricket Cares program uses cricket as an agent of change in the community.  

Australian cricket squads undertake community activities during each of their overseas tours.