Shock as young Hampshire bowler dies

Hamza Ali    Picture: Hampshire Cricket Club
Hamza Ali Picture: Hampshire Cricket Club
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Hampshire are today mourning the shock death of 20-year-old bowler Hamza Ali.

Ali is believed to have drowned after getting into difficulty while swimming in the River Avon yesterday evening.

He made his first-class debut while on trial with the club in a pre-season friendly against Cardiff MCCU at the Ageas Bowl in April.

A former Hampshire second XI player – making two appearances last season – Ali then went on to play a number of games on trial for the MCC Young Cricketers.

In a statement on Hampshire’s website, head of player development Charlie Freeston, said: ‘We are shocked and saddened to hear the news – Hamza had formed a very important part of the second XI team since making his debut against Kent last season.

‘He was an incredibly committed and enthusiastic cricketer who always gave 100 per cent for the team that he was playing for.

‘His impressive performances on the field quickly proved he could be part of Hampshire’s future.

‘On behalf of myself, his coaches and all that played with Hamza, we would like to send our deepest condolences to his incredibly supportive family and friends at this difficult time.’

Hampshire’s players will show their respects tonight by wearing black armbands in their NatWest T20 Blast match against Surrey at the Oval.