Thursday, 23 May 2019 | 17 Ramadan 1440
Game changer: Slowly, cricket takes root in Omani schools

Game changer: Slowly, cricket takes root in Omani schools

OC not too long ago signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Ministry of Higher Education (MoHE) to market the game amongst Omani kids.

Following the MoU, an ‘Omani Junior Cricket Development Programme’, was launched at the Oman Cricket Academy in Amerat.

A total of 25 Omani students, such as as young as ten year olds, are becoming imparted simple cricketing lessons by OC-appointed coaches Desmond Berhardt and Javed Abdul Qadir al Balushi.

“The whole idea of taking cricket to the grassroots level in Omani schools was mooted by OC’s Board of Directors, particularly Pankaj Khimji and Madhu Jesrani who in consultation with the Ministry of Sports Affairs and MoHE, worked hard to bring this to fruition,” mentioned Mendis, whilst addressing a gathering of players, parents and OC officials.

“This is a great programme for the neighborhood. They can actually advantage from the instruction facilities offered by Oman Cricket. It is bringing young kids to cricket grounds.

“It is also bringing Omani parents to the grounds. We are sure they will share their experiences with other parents and the number of young Omani players will continue to grow.”

Keen to offer maximum help to the budding cricketers and their parents, OC has appointed board member Dad Mohammed al Balushi as the camp manager and Sabah al Fadhil as the camp coordinator.

The instruction camp, which began on February 22, is held twice a week – on Monday and Wednesday.

Parents come to drop their kids and remain on to watch them bat and bowl. “My son is very happy to be able to play cricket. Every Monday and Wednesday he waits to come here at 4pm. I am happy to see my son learning something new and exciting. I hope he becomes a good player and represents Oman in the future,” mentioned an elated Khalfan al Mayahi.

Muneera Saud al Shukairy can not take her eyes off her son as he runs, trains and tries to bat straight. “I am proud of my son that he is attempting to find out a new sport. Cricket is so new to us but it is thrilling. My son was extremely excited the initial day he brought a type from his college and told me that he wanted to join the cricket instruction camp. Despite my reluctance he created me sign it. Now I am pleased to see him play.

“He has learned new things in the four weeks he has been coming here. I would be very proud if he one day goes on to represent Oman.”

Jesrani, secretary, OC, looked forward to welcoming much more Omani schoolboys and girls to the camp. “While most of the children training here are from Amerat, we would be happy to welcome young players from all parts of the capital. OC will extend its full support to groom these kids into good cricketers.”

Information Source: Muscat Daily

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