Great CWB Cycle set to begin in Africa

Two amateur cricketers will today embark on a 4,000-mile cycle across Africa to raise money for UK charity Cricket Without Boundaries.

Coinciding with the second Test between England and South Africa in Cape Town, Carl Ferguson and Jamie Burton will pedal across nine countries before finishing in the Rwandan capital of Kigali 100 days later.

The ‘Great CWB Cycle’ will mark the 10th anniversary of CWB – a volunteer-run organisation that uses cricket to promote HIV/Awareness and as a vehicle for social development tool in Sub-Saharan Africa.

The cause is close to the heart of both Ferguson and Burton, who have coached tens of thousands of youngsters and trained more than a thousand coaches on the 11 CWB projects they have undertaken between them.

Ferguson, 37, an actor and a keen cricketer with Flitwick CC in Bedfordshire, said: “CWB really is an awesome charity and something I am immensely proud to be a part of.

“I have seen first-hand the power its work can have on communities and I am determined to help in whatever way I can to ensure more and more projects take place to help us achieve the charity’s aim of ‘Bowling AIDS out of Africa’.”

Originally from Edinburgh, Burton is head of marketing at Inside Government and a former International Cricket Coach Europe and Sky Sports Young Coach of the Year.

The 29-year-old added: “We want to spread the CWB message – both here and in Africa. It’s something we massively believe in. We believe in the power of cricket, we believe in the power of connecting cricket to the HIV/AIDS message. Part of why we are doing this is fundraising but by far the biggest motivation is raising awareness about the charity.”

Through CWB the two friends – who both live in London – have coached Maasai Warriors in Kenya, former child soldiers in Uganda, and used cricket to help rebuild communities in Rwanda following the genocide.

And although they have never taken a trip together, their personal experiences are united by Baharini – a school on the edge of a slum in Nakuru, Kenya.

When Burton visited in 2012 the school – which includes a high proportion of children with HIV/AIDS – had just started playing cricket.

On that trip he met class teacher, Maggie Kamau, who took part on a training day run by CWB volunteers and brought two teams to a cricket festival the charity had organised.

Although the teams struggled to compete, Burton and his fellow volunteers were overcome by the spirit of the children – all of whom lived in severe poverty and many who were physically smaller than their peers through malnutrition.

Around 18 months later Ferguson also visited Nakuru and found that since Burton’s trip Kamau had transformed the school into the most feared team in the district, with several players having been picked for Kenya youth teams.

Burton said: “Maggie had no cricket background and by her own admission would never have had the confidence to teach cricket if she hadn’t been on that CWB coaching course.

“To see what she is achieving now is incredibly satisfying.

“The success the children are having has also changed the way they are viewed by pupils from other schools. Previously they didn’t want to interact with them because they were from the slums. But through their cricketing ability they have a new-found respect for them.”

During the trip they hope to meet up with Kamau and many of the other local coaches, teachers and CWB coaching ambassadors they have encountered on past projects. 

The pair plan to camp or stay with friends during the trip and are funding all costs of the expedition themselves – including flights – to ensure all money raised goes to CWB.

As well as passing through South Africa, Rwanda and Kenya the route will take in Botswana, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Malawi, Tanzania and Uganda.

They will encounter temperatures of over 30 degrees celsius and climb more than 55,000 metres in total but will be given a welcome boost when they arrive in Rwanda where they will ride with the national cycling team.

Although Ferguson has run eight London Marathons, he admits that the Great CWB Cycle will be unchartered territory – especially after starting his preparations on board a “Boris bike.”

Since then the duo have stepped up their training and had a significant upgrade thanks to bike manufacturer Surly who donated two of their “Long Haul Trucker” models for the journey.

For more information on the Great CWB Cycle, please visit

To donate, visit

For full details about Cricket Without Boundaries – including how to volunteer – go to 

Source: ECB

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