Big boost for schools’ cricket

Queen’s College will look to draw on the wealth of experience from former Titans and Warriors bowler, Rowan Richards, as they resume the second half of the cricket season.

Richards is in town as part of the CSA focus schools program and joined as professional coach for both Queen’s Junior and the college.

He has been in Komani since July and is midway through his first season with the boys.

I found it (Queen’s) quiet impressive and I came into a nice setup. There was Ralph Cullinan at the senior school and Zandile Gwana with the juniors. They are both doing a great job,” said an apparently chuffed Richards.

Richards said he was excited about being part of a project that dovetailed with his own life philosophy,

I have a lot of experiential knowledge in the 15 years of being a pro and I want to pass that on to the boys. I want them to know what it takes to make a career in sport, not just in cricket, but in life.

I am not here to just grow players but holistic individuals, so when they go out there they have fundamentals to build on.

It is what the school is about. It is the values the headmaster is teaching the boys. Things like excellence and how to conduct yourself as a Queenian. I am a firm believer in stuff like that, little things that look after the bigger picture.”

Richards, who was recently in the KZN Midlands for the Khaya Majola Cricket Week as assistant coach and manager for the Border team, said strong grassroots were essential in cricketer development.

Mini cricket plays a big role in the development of cricket. It is a pipeline and it is where everyone is investing their time. At Queen’s we started mini cricket last year and this year we had more than 90 children and 10 coaches. We are firm on building our cricket from the foundation up – from grassroots level.”

Next week schools open and Queen’s is hoping to have a better half to the season.

The first half was a good experience for the boys. They have come back hungrier and better prepared.

They are a focused group. It is nice to work with boys who have their own plans. It is easier for us, the coaching structure, to build around that. I believe it is how we grow leaders; guys taking responsibility.”

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