Leinster underage players visit Middlesex
Mon, Sep 8, 2008 12:22 PM
'A cricketing experience I will never forget' was how one of the Leinster players described his recent coaching visit to Lords. The two-day trip, put together by Leinster CDO Brían O'Rourke and Middlesex 1st team coach Toby Radford offered the three boys, Barry McCarthy, Niall Delany & George Dockrell an insight into the county underage cricket programme and how it is run in the UK.
The first morning was spent initially watching the Middlesex team prepare for their County Championship game against Worcestershire. Following this the boys had use of the Nursery Ground grass nets and were to practice there with members of the Middlesex U'17's squad for several hours. Lunch was taken with the players and a visit to the home team dressing room proved a memorable experience for all.
Following lunch, several hours were spent in the indoor school where England stars Monty Panesar, Andrew Strauss and Simon Jones were all working on various aspects of their games with numerous ECB coaches. A short sightseeing trip into London finished off a very tiring day but one that will be remembered for a long time.
The following morning the boys attended the start of a 50 over U'17 Middlesex v's Essex game held at the impressive Merchant Taylor's School. Warm ups were completed with the Middlesex squad before the boys again had use of the excellent grass nets at the school. Several members of the Middlesex U'16's squad joined the boys for a middle practice during the second half of the day.
Overall the trip proved a huge success and showed the Leinster boys the standard and facilities available to their age group counterparts in the UK. The three boys all performed very well and the Middlesex coaching staff were very complimentary of the playing standard of the Leinster boys over the two days. It is hoped similar coaching trips like this can be set up during the winter and to repeat the above trip next summer.