Academy blog – Tom Chapman

Sunday 24th April 2011

On Saturday 16th and Sunday 17th April the Academy Squad had a two day training camp at the St Lawrence Ground, Canterbury. The aim of the camp was to get us ready and prepared for outdoor wickets and conditions.

On Saturday Min Patel and Dewald Nel joined our session to help out and give advice to bowlers on how to bowl in a one day game. We arrived for a 10am start and were firstly given an overview of how the day was going to plan out. We were then put into two groups and discussed what we wanted to get out of the day. Next we headed outside to start our warm up which involved playing a game of rugby football and then stretching off afterwards to make sure we didn’t pull any muscles.

For our first training activity we were split into 3 groups; 1 seam group, 1 spin group and a keepers group. Dewald Nel took the seamers and Min Patel took the spinners, The seamers were asked to get loose and then start hitting the areas which we thought would be good for a 1 day game. We also had to get used to bowling with a white cricket ball as most of us had not experienced playing with one.

Once all the bowlers had warmed up we got into a middle/net session. The middle session was based on one of the wickets on the square and the bowlers were bowling at a batsmen. Dewald Nel was overlooking this session and giving out pointers to bowlers about bowling to a particular batsmen in a 1 day game.

The net session was based on the edge of the outfield. The net was used for the spin bowlers to bowl at the batsmen. Min Patel was in the spin net to both share his experience on how to bowl in a one day game and also to have a bowl himself!

After an hour and a half net/middle session we moved on to the fielding practice. We were split into 3 groups and 3 different stations were set up. One involved us taking low flat catches, another high catches and one for direct hits.

During lunch we had the opportunity to ask Min Patel questions about his cricketing experiences.

At the start of day 2 we were introduced to a new member of the Academy; Damali Bell from Bermuda. We followed a similar pattern to day 1 starting with a warm up and then moving straight into the middle practice. On the Sunday we worked on multi-day red ball practice. Instead of having 2 nets there was only a middle practice where we had 2 batsmen, 3 bowlers and the rest formed a field almost like a real game.

During lunch Alan Elham joined us and we got the chance to ask him questions about his experiences.

After lunch, Pete Kelly the fitness coach set us a tough fitness session which lasted about an hour. The session involved two teams running 2 sets of 400m races. This was then followed by a competition for the two teams to catch a rugby ball which had been kicked high in the air. The team with the most drops had to do a forfeit.

To finish off the day we all had to endure a very very very cold ice bath!!!!!