NEOM has partnered with one of India's premier T20 cricket league teams, Rajasthan Royals, to deliver NEOM’s first-ever cricket programme. The landmark pilot program aims to facilitate an active and healthy lifestyle within the growing workforce, forecast to reach 60,000 people by the end of the year.
Founded in 2008 and hailing from Rajasthan, Rajasthan Royals is one of the world’s most renowned cricket teams and is recognised internationally for its academies and community foundation work. To mark the partnership, Rajasthan Royals Lead Owner, Manoj Badale, today visited NEOM to meet CEO, Nadhmi Al-Nasr, community members, and take part in a selection of cricket sessions.
The cricket programme will focus on inclusivity and reflects the Royals’ commitment to promoting the development and innovation of cricket internationally. With a workforce of thousands already based at NEOM, cricket has become one of the project’s most popular sports, attracting more participation and a growing number of spectators from those working on-site.
NEOM aspires to be an innovative destination for sport, partnering with global sports brands, championing livability for its residents, and contributing to NEOM’s dynamic economy. The new partnership will be another element of NEOM’s commitment to supporting an active and healthy community.
HRH Prince Saud bin Mishal Al Saud, Chairman of the Saudi Arabian Cricket Federation added: “It’s important that we develop a thriving cricket ecosystem that can be enjoyed by everyone. We are excited to see NEOM’s cricket program partnered by Rajasthan Royals offer that, while also contributing to the growth of the sport in the Kingdom.’
Jan Paterson, Managing Director of NEOM Sport, added, “NEOM is committed to nurturing the most physically active society globally and our partnership with the Royals is the latest step in making that vision a reality. Cricket is already a hugely popular sport in NEOM and we want to capture and nurture that enthusiasm and make sure it is being felt throughout the region. Working with the Saudi Arabian Cricket Federation and the Royals will enable us to provide cricket for men and women, girls and boys alike, in the community at NEOM.”
Manoj Badale, Lead Owner of Rajasthan Royals, said, “We are thrilled to partner with NEOM and launch this grassroots cricket program. This partnership allows us to contribute to NEOM’s vision of fostering an inclusive, active, and healthy community. We look forward to witnessing the growth of cricket within NEOM and creating a lasting impact for the workforce, residents, and society.”
The cricket programme will follow the Royals Way of player development and will aim to deliver an authentic T20 cricket experience on-site at NEOM with the involvement of the larger community present there. It will also be supported by a participation programme which will be delivered by the end of the year. Sport is seen as essential to the enrichment of lives at NEOM, and the organisation is aiming to support the development of sport leaders within the workforce.
About Rajasthan Royals:
Rajasthan Royals were the champions of the inaugural 2008 season and are one of the 10 teams competing in the Indian Premier League (IPL). The franchise completed a major shareholding restructure in 2021, with Emerging Media having the majority ownership of the franchise with support from new co-investor RedBird Capital Partners.