Howzat for dedication!

By Mark Elson in Local People

FORMER Ashes winning captain Michael Vaughan will be cycling through the Forest this autumn with seven other England cricket stars on a 360-mile charity bike ride.

The BBC Test Match Special summariser will be saddling up alongside Marcus Trescothick, Rob Key, Tim Bresnan, Michael Vaughan, Ashley Giles, Matthew Maynard and Gavin Hamilton to raise money for the Big Bike Ride 3.

And they will pass through Mitcheldean before calling in at Lydney and Ruardean cricket clubs when they head through the Forest on Monday, October 16, finishing that day at Monmouth School.

The five-day ride starts at Edgbaston cricket ground in Birmingham, and takes in Sheffield, the Peak District, Cheshire, Shropshire, Worcester and the Forest of Dean and Wye Valley before finishing at Cardiff’s SWALEC stadium.

The ride was launched in 2013 following the death of Matthew Maynard’s cricketer son Tom, who played his early cricket with Glamorgan in the Welsh capital before moving to Surrey.

It will raise money for the trust established in his name and the Professional Cricketers’ Association Benevolent Fund.

The first two Big Bike Rides raised more than £320,000 and this year’s event takes on added significance as 2017 is the PCA’s 50thanniversary.

A Legacy Year Appeal has been launched to raise an extra £250,000 for the fund.

The peloton will include past and current county cricketers, PCA and England and Wales Cricket Board staff, sponsors and cricket fans.

The PCA Benevolent Fund was set up in 2000 and supports past and present cricketers and their immediate family members in times of hardship and upheaval.

The Tom Maynard Trust was set up in 2012 and supports aspiring young sports people in a number of ways including sponsorship of the PCA’s annual Rookie Camp.

There are still a few places left to join Big Bike Ride 3 by registering at http://www.thepca.co.uk/the-big-bike-ride-3.html

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