Scotland look back to a successful Women's Academy

Mon, May 10, 2010 3:33 PM

The ICC Women's Academy 2010 took place in La Manga, Spain between 14-20 April, it included players and national coaches from Ireland, Scotland and Netherlands. A diary produced by the Scottish players explains their highs and lows of the week.

Five travel weary Wildcats players, together with Women's Head Coach Adam Park-Elliott, finally returned to Scotland on 23 April, after our return flight from Alicante to Glasgow had been hit by the cancellations caused by the volcanic ash hovering over UK airspace. Indeed, some of the coaches who had been due to attend the Academy later in the week had already had their outward flights cancelled because of the Icelandic eruptions.

24 hours later and I think our flight would have got us home safe and sound, but we were due to depart from Alicante on Tuesday; and it was cancelled early that morning. It meant an extra two days stay at the complex for all of us Charlotte Bascombe [Aberdeen Uni & Corstorphine], Catherine Smaill [Cardiff Uni], Leigh Kasperek , Lorna Jack and Samantha Haggo followed by an arduous 34-hour coach ride starting at 2am on the Thursday morning across Spain and France to Calais. A cross-Channel ferry to Dover brought us back to the UK, where the double decker transport continued its journey through to 'the home of cricket', Lords Cricket Ground. As we arrived at Lords bright and early on the Friday morning, we had a stroll round the famous ground before heading North, either by train to Edinburgh or hire car to Glasgow; how we managed to do all this with so little sleep since leaving La Manga I'm not sure!

Despite our longer stay and drastically altered travel arrangements, the whole Academy week was again a fantastic opportunity to prepare ourselves for the season ahead commented Charlotte, who will again act as the Women's vice-captain this coming season. It's our first visit to La Manga voiced Lorna and Samantha, hopefully not our last too, as the whole week got us working individually, with team-mates and players from other countries, thinking about our game and how we can take away lots of new and different ideas to improve and develop all aspects of our game - we especially enjoyed the sliding drills.

The Under 17 Girls don't start their summer fixture programme until the later end of June, but the Senior Women's first outing will be against Lancashire on Sunday 23 May at Wigan CC, before a double-header on Sunday 30 and Monday 31 May against Wales at Stirling County CC, the 'Home of Scottish Women's Cricket'. A full list of fixtures is available on the Cricket Scotland website.

Practice matches and training sessions will take place during May, again at Stirling County CC, to enable the us to prepare for the forthcoming matches.

Even with the change of travel plans, we all felt that the Academy was of great benefit to us and has provided us with some great expertise.

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