The Kia Oval has been renamed for 24 hours as the Kia Shahidul Alam Ratan Oval, in honour of a former Bangladesh cricketer, reported ESPNcricinfo. Shahidul Alam Ratan is now the leader of a London cricket charity which has been helping to keep children active during the lockdown.
Ratan, a wicketkeeper in Bangladesh's pre-Test days in the 1980s and 1990s, is chief executive of Capital Kids Cricket, a charity which uses cricket as a tool to change the lives of disadvantaged children.
During the lockdown, Capital Kids Cricket created a digital activity zone to keep kids active, learning and keep in touch with each other socially. Ratan oversaw all their activity, including running virtual sessions with vulnerable kids such as refugees.
"It is brilliant news to be recognised with this honour and it means a lot," Ratan said. "This may bring some light to the charity and people like me who want to make a change, who want to go the extra mile to help people who need it.
"To have a prestigious stadium like The Kia Oval named after me is a huge honour in the cricketing world, not only here in the UK. I would like to thank Surrey Cricket as well."
The charity initiated a virtual ball-passing game globally. Hundreds of people joined from the USA to Australia, South Africa to Sweden, including Syrian refugee camps from Lebanon, ending with a virtual celebration with 130 people and families from across the globe joining via zoom.
They have now started women and girl's activities online, running aerobics exercises and boxing classes, and they also ran summer cricket camps in three locations, while constantly supporting parents over the phone who are facing loneliness or suffering from mental health challenges.
"We have three or four clubs we look after and we told our coaches to set up activities within a home environment. Show the kids what they can do with batting, bowling and fielding within their home - in living rooms, small backyards or alleyways between houses," Ratan said.
Dame Katherine Grainger, UK Sport Chair said, "It's fantastic that sports across the nations have been able to come together to celebrate grassroots champions who have gone above and beyond this year. Around £30m a week is raised for good causes across the UK by people playing The National Lottery, and has helped sport at all levels, from the smallest rowing club to helping athletes prepare for the Tokyo Olympics next year."