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Norfolk firm teams up with cricket hero Sir Ian Botham on new range of wines

PUBLISHED: 09:16 15 December 2017 | UPDATED: 10:00 15 December 2017

Former cricketer Ian Botham in action. The ex-England captain has formed a partnership with Broadland WIneries to put his name to a new range of wines. Picture: Archive

Former cricketer Ian Botham in action. The ex-England captain has formed a partnership with Broadland WIneries to put his name to a new range of wines. Picture: Archive

Archant

It’s a top-order partnership which would make the England cricket team proud.

Sir Ian Botham sets off to Coltishall from Bure Valley Railway Station, Hoveton, during a charity walk.
PHOTO: ANTONY KELLYSir Ian Botham sets off to Coltishall from Bure Valley Railway Station, Hoveton, during a charity walk. PHOTO: ANTONY KELLY

A Norfolk drinks company is hoping it has pulled off a stroke of genius after teaming up with one of the country’s most famous cricketers on a range of wines.

Ashes hero Sir Ian Botham will pick vintages from his favourite vineyards and winemakers for range to be sold by Broadland Wineries.

The Cawston-based firm has hooked up with Beefy, as the former England captain is known, thanks to new chief executive Paul Schaafsma, who had worked with Sir Ian in previous roles.

The company is hoping the cricketer’s taste in wine will be a hit with customers and drive sales – but they will not be able to catch the range until next year.

England hero Ian Botham arrives back at the Headingley pavilion with a souvenir stump after his team's incredible victory in the 1981 Ashes series. Picture: PA ArchiveEngland hero Ian Botham arrives back at the Headingley pavilion with a souvenir stump after his team's incredible victory in the 1981 Ashes series. Picture: PA Archive

It is not yet known how much drinkers will have to stump up for the wines but a Broadland spokesman said there would be tiers to make the range accessible to consumers.

He said: “We are going to work with Ian Botham to launch a range of wines.

“There will be a tier of the highest quality wines which will be selected by Ian Botham, who is visiting his favourite vineyards to find the right wines.

“There will also be a range that is more affordable for everyone and he is working with us to make sure these are of the highest standard.”

Paul Schaafsma, the new chief executive of Broadland Wineries. Picture: Supplied by Broadland Wineries.Paul Schaafsma, the new chief executive of Broadland Wineries. Picture: Supplied by Broadland Wineries.

Sir Ian is currently in Australia as part of the media coverage of the Ashes, which sees England take on the Aussies over five tests.

Putting his down-time Down Under to good use, the all-rounder will get started on researching for the range.

“While Ian Botham is in Australia for the Ashes he will be going around some of the vineyards to see if he can find some wines for his range, so the timing is very good,” added the spokesman.

Sir Ian, who was knighted for his services to cricket and charity in 2007, hit 14 centuries and took 27 five-wicket hauls during his 102 test matches.

Broadland Wineries' laboratory technician team.Broadland Wineries' laboratory technician team.

His love for wine is well known and he part owns the Botham Merrill Willis brand alongside former England bowler Bob Willis.

Broadland Wineries, which is a member of the EDP Top 100 list of Norfolk and Suffolk’s biggest companies by turnover, generates sales of £60m a year and employs 130 people.

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