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Cricket World Cup Stars Reveal Favourite Books To Promote Global Literacy Campaign

February 08, 2011

Press Releases

Leading cricket stars have revealed their favourite books on the day that the International Cricket Council (ICC) and Room to Read announced a partnership to promote literacy and access to books at the ICC Cricket World Cup 2011.

A player from each of the 14 competing teams at the tournament has contributed to the ultimate World Cup reading list as part of a campaign to promote the importance of reading and to raise awareness of the work that Room to Read does in offering educational opportunities to young people.

Among the player choices are a number of sports biographies, including Andre Agassi’s ‘Open’, selected by both Shane Watson and Virat Kohli. Fiction books chosen by the stars include Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, chosen by Bangladesh’s Tamim Iqbal, and 1984 by George Orwell, selected by Ireland’s Ed Joyce.

A full list of choices is as follows:






Shane Watson

"Open" by Andre Agassi


Tamim Iqbal

"Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone" by JK Rowling


Zubin Sukari

"Life" by Keith Richards


Luke Wright

Goosebump Series by R L Stine


Virat Kohli

"Open" by Andre Agassi


Ed Joyce

"1984" by George Orwell


Steve Tikolo

"Long Walk to Freedom" by Nelson Mandela


Peter Borren

"Night Train to Lisbon" by Pascal Mercier

New Zealand

Kane Williamson

Jack Reach Series by Lee Child


Shahid Afridi

"Fazail-E-Amaal" by Muhammad Zakariya Kandhlawi

South Africa

Wayne Parnell

"The Stand" by Stephen King

Sri Lanka

Angelo Mathews

"Talent Is Never Enough" by John Maxwell

West Indies

Sulieman Benn

"Supercat: The Authorised Biography of Clive Lloyd"


Graeme Cremer

"It’s Not About The Bike" by Lance Armstrong


Room to Read is seeking to transform the lives of millions of children across Asia and Africa by focusing on literacy and gender equality in education. Working in collaboration with local communities, partner organisations and governments, the charity aims to develop literacy skills and a habit of reading among primary school children. It also supports girls to complete secondary school with the relevant life skills to succeed in school and beyond.

Among the cricket-playing countries in which Room to Read publishes books, establishes libraries and builds schools are Cricket World Cup hosts Bangladesh, India and Sri Lanka.

The organisation has already benefitted 4.1 million young people in nine countries, including 10,000 girls on educational scholarships, and it has distributed in excess of 8 million English and local language books, and established 10,000 libraries and over 1,100 schools. By 2015, Room to Read aims to have helped 10 million children.

At the ICC Cricket World Cup 2011, there will be a series of player interactions promoting Room to Read, while fans will be encouraged to donate money to fund projects. The ICC has also helped establish Room to Read libraries in Bangladesh, India and Sri Lanka as part of the ICC Cricket World Cup legacy.

ICC Chief Executive Haroon Lorgat said: “The ICC is committed to using the popularity of cricket and its Great Spirit to raise awareness of important social causes. By working with Room to Read at the ICC Cricket World Cup 2011, we hope to highlight the importance of literacy for all.”

John Wood, Room to Read Founder and Board Chair, added: “We are thrilled to partner with ICC during the ICC Cricket World Cup 2011 to promote awareness and raise support for children’s education among a captive and diverse audience of millions.

“It is exciting to see cricketing heroes use their celebrity to inspire their littlest fans in Bangladesh, India, Sri Lanka and many other countries to read and seek knowledge.

“Every day we lose is a day we can’t get back, so we hope that cricket enthusiasts from around the world will join in our global campaign to make sure every child has the ability and opportunity to learn.”

Further information on player activities promoting Room to Read will be released in due course.