Region's junior cricketers master skills ahead of season
KINGAROY junior cricketer James Whiteman is looking forward to returning to the crease alongside his mates for the upcoming cricket season.
At the weekend he was in Nanango alongside fellow aspiring South Burnett cricket stars, taking part in a two-day clinic led by level-three coaches Vic Williams and Terry Oliver.
"We used ball machines in the nets for the first time,” Whiteman said.
"It was really fun. It was coming a lot faster and the ball was on the stump.
"And it was really interesting to see how we were bowling - I learnt that I am a side-on bowler.”
Brett Burrows from the Nanango Scorpions had seen the difference taking part in the clinic in Toowoomba and Hervey Bay had made to his kids' skills and wanted to give the opportunity to South Burnett players and coaches.
"The idea was to bring them here to the area to give these kids exposure to it so they don't have to travel away,” Burrows said.
"They have really enjoyed it and I have seen a big improvement.”
Coach Williams said running the clinic ahead of the season would be a great benefit to the young players.
"It is the best time for the players to start improving on their skills before they start playing games,” he said.
"Once they get into a competitive game, it is all about competition rather than executing your skills.”
Returning to the country and seeing the enthusiastic and resilient attitude of the kids is always a great experience for Williams.
"We love coming back and seeing the country kids because they are always really good,” he said.
"The kids start playing in seniors at an earlier age, which is tougher cricket, and those senior players help them along the way.
"Whereas in the city they play in their peer groups for long, so it builds that resilience at an earlier age of being able to get out there and be coached during the game by people that have been playing for a lot longer.”