Pyrland School in Taunton is sponsoring one of its Year 10 students, James Hibbert, who has been selected by Somerset County Cricket Club’s Academy for an U15 Player Pathway tour of Sri Lanka from 7th to February 19th February 2024.

For the past three years Somerset Cricket Foundation has provided state school children with top level MCC cricket coaching.

James played a season in the pathway county squad last year, which led to him being successful in his selection for the Sri Lanka tour.

He said: "I am very proud to have been chosen to represent my county and am excited to experience the different playing conditions and seeing the cultures and sites of Sri Lanka. I am hoping to achieve my first century in batting, but also to experience a different playing environment especially with the heat (hopefully!)"

Batsman James has been playing hardball since the age of seven, initially for Staplegrove Cricket Club and now with Taunton CC both adult and youth section.

Head Teacher Lisa Webber said: “We are doing everything we can to support him in his endeavours. It will be a wonderful experience for him, from a cultural as well as a cricket point of view. We are particularly proud of him as not many state schools get the opportunity to send students on tours like this, we are one of only a few represented.”