The third and final Test between the West Indies and England at Manchester has raised £ 871,221 for the Ruth Strauss Foundation even though the match was played behind the closed doors.
The funds will go towards the Ruth Strauss Foundation’s mission of providing pre-bereavement support for families facing the death of a parent from cancer, and driving much-needed research into non-smoking lung cancers, England and Wales Cricket Board has reported.
Supporters, fans, clubs and organisations were encouraged to wear red throughout the third Test to show their support for the charity, with players wearing special Ruth Strauss Foundation branded Test shirts and red caps being worn before play on day one. Branding around Emirates Old Trafford went red throughout the Test including the stumps and boundary boards.
“This is beyond anything we could have hoped for and is going to make a real difference to people and families,” said former England captain and the foundation founder Andrew Strauss.
“I’m delighted and overwhelmed at the generosity of cricket fans over the past five days. We had no idea what it was going to be like with no fans and we are so grateful to everyone. This is beyond anything we could have hoped for and is going to make a real difference to people and families.
“I’d like to give a special thank you to both England and the West Indies teams, ECB, Lancashire CCC, as well as the broadcasters – Sky and the BBC for promoting the cause and their incredible support of the Foundation.”
Tom Harrison, ECB Chief Executive Officer said, “We couldn’t be more pleased for Andrew and the Ruth Strauss Foundation. Over the past few days we have seen first-hand the power of the cricket family and the funds raised will have a huge impact in helping the Ruth Strauss Foundation reach their goals and build an incredible legacy for Ruth.”
Karina Murtagh, Ruth Strauss Foundation Chief Executive said, “It has been an absolutely incredible few days for the Foundation. It has been so heart-warming to see the support and kindness of people throughout the game – it’s a family supporting families. Thank you to everyone involved.”
Swathes of Manchester including the Arndale Centre turned red thanks to Ocean Outdoor while, in London, the Department of Health and Social Care building went red to support the Foundation. Counties also showed their backing including Essex CCC who turned the Cloudfm County Ground red.
Social media was also awash with red throughout the Test, with #RedforRuth trending in the UK as cricket clubs and fans shared #RedforRuth themed pictures in support of the cause. In addition, Twitter created a custom #RedforRuth emoji to show their backing for the campaign.