HIGH school boys from around the Ballarat area have spent the week in intensive cricket training, preparing for the coming season.
The Central Highlands boys under 18s and under 16s were guided over Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday with specialist trainers and young Victorian Bushranger Steven Reid.
Central Highlands regional cricket manager Campbell Waring said boys had travelled from as far as Gisborne, Sunbury, Lismore, Maryborough and Stawell for the training.
The boys were divided into their skilled areas of pace bowling, spin bowling and batting.
“The training has been focused around skill work and we’ve incorporated some video analysis. We’ve been working on the technical aspects of the game,” Waring said.
“The boys have just all finished their local footy, so we thought this was a great way to kickstart the season.”
From the boys, 26 to 28 will make the selections for the squad in November, where 13 of which will play in the State Championships in January.
“We’ve bought in some specialist coaches, which is great for the boys because they don’t often get that at their level,” Waring said.
Reid told the young boys of how he made his journey from his country town of Birchip up to Melbourne.
“I told them my pathway, of how I also made the journey from a country town down to Melbourne.
“The main message was that they have to make a contest of every opportunity that’s presented to them.”
The pace bowler commented that it was the spin bowlers that had impressed him, having missed the pacers earlier that day. One of the promising young cricketers involved in the program was Blake Thomson, who played in the under 14 squad last year and is hoping to make the under 16 squad this year.
“I’m looking forward to the new season and hopefully going up a level. I like a challenge,” Thomson said.
The batter just finished the football season.
“I’m starting to feel the flow of cricket again.”
Similar sessions for female cricketers will run next week.