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WANTED - LOCAL KIDS TO TAKE PART IN NATWEST CRICKET SPEED CHALLENGE

England and Durham CCC star player, Paul Collingwood will be joining the NatWest Interactive Cricket Zone, when it bowls into the Metro Centre, Gateshead for two days on Saturday 15 June. This roadshow aims to take cricket into the community and give kids of all ages the opportunity to test their cricket skills and qualify for The NatWest Speed Challenge Final at Lord's.

The NatWest Interactive Zone is visiting 10 venues across the UK, prior to The NatWest Series starting on 27 June. Paul Collingwood, who made his international debut in The NatWest Series last year, will join ECB endorsed coaches to demonstrate and help kids improve their cricket skills in the nets and against the reaction wall as well as searching for future cricket stars.

The NatWest Speed Challenge competition that will be searching for the UK's fastest young bowler, will take place throughout the day where all kids will be given the chance to record their fastest delivery and enter their name into a prize draw for tickets to The NatWest Series. All entrants will be able to check their speed and position in the competition by visiting www.natwestseries.com <http://www.natwestseries.com/>

The overall fastest five competitors in each of the four categories, Under 17's and Under 12's, boys and girls will qualify for the NatWest Speed Challenge Final to be held at Lord's before The NatWest Series Final. The NatWest Speed Challenge winners will receive a place at one of NatWest's cricket clinics with coaching from England fast bowler and NatWest Ambassador, Darren Gough.

Abigail Searle, Sponsorship Manager, NatWest said, "Grassroots cricket is fundamental to the future of the game and we are delighted to be able to give kids the opportunity to experience the fun and excitement of cricket as the NatWest Interactive Zone tours the country."

The NatWest Interactive Zone is part of a major NatWest grassroots campaign to encourage and develop children's interest in the sport. NatWest have invested over £½million over three years in a series of grassroots initiatives including the NatWest 'Get Involved' programme and the distribution of 799 flicx pitches and 10,000 skills balls to schools and clubs across the UK.

The NatWest Series comes to the Riverside in Chester-le-Street on Thursday 4th July when England take on India under floodlights. The match starts at 2.30pm and is expected to finish at 10.15pm. Tickets are still available and cost £35 for adults and £15 for juniors (U16). To book tickets please call 0870 90 90 190 or 0191 387 1717.

For further information and interview requests, please contact Lucinda Harding or Claire Gatcum at Octagon on 020 7862 0000 or 07788 70632.

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