Cricket Scotland takes Cricket Factory to the Cowal Gathering

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Following the success of their ‘Festival Square Takeover’ Cricket Scotland asked the Cricket Factory team to take their rig up to the Cowal Highland Gathering in Dunoon. Steve Paige Head of Participation said, “I’m delighted that we’re going to have such a large presence at the Cowal Highland Gathering in partnership with Cricket Factory and I’m grateful to Clydesdale Bank for their support in making this happen.  The rig is a great way for people to have a go at the core skills including seeing how fast they can throw on the speed challenge”.

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Cricket Factory Schools Cup

winners with trophy
Cricket Scotland’s third Schools week of cricket culminated with the inaugural finals of the ‘Cricket Factory School’s Cup’, the competition replacing the Emerging Schools Cup.

The setting for finals day was once again the picturesque Doo’cot Park in Perth and for the third day in a row the sun shone brightly.

Four teams made it to Finals Day of the new competition which is aimed at increasing the interest and participation in cricket in Secondary schools where cricket is not traditionally taught. This year’s four finalists were James Gillespie High School (Edinburgh), Monifeith High School (Angus), Grove Academy (Dundee) and Kinross High School (Perth & Kinross)

At the trophy presentation all the schools received a Cricket Factory Core Skills kit supplied by Cricket Scotland development partner and competition sponsor Cricket Factory. Cricket Scotland also presented each team with a box of training balls to assist with their continued development in preparation for the 2014 Cricket Factory Schools Cup.

Cricket Factory played a part in Cricket Scotland winning ICC Regional Award

Cricket Scotland won the Pepsi Development Award 2012 for the ‘Best Overall Development’ after hosting a number of initiatives and events which included the Summer Squad, where a team of coaches delivered community and curriculum based sessions, cricket corporate evenings, the growth of national junior cups and the Asda ‘volunteer of the month’ prize initiative. The fantastic promotional event hosted in Edinburgh ‘Olympic Live site- Festival Square takeover’, in partnership with Cricket Factory, involved 450 participants during the day and helped to raise the profile of cricket in Scotland.

Cricket Scotland and Cricket Factory take over Festival Square

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There was a buzz around Edinburgh’s Festival Square in the early hours of Tuesday morning as Cricket Scotland and Cricket Factory prepared for a day of pitching the ever popular sport to the public of Edinburgh.

The venue could not have been more prominent, as it stood under the shadow of the famous Sheraton Hotel and the busy banking sector, the eye-catching rig enticed those walking around the capital to try out their skills on the various activity stations.

Scotland internationalists, Gordon Drummond, Gordon Goudie, Richie Berrington, Ryan Flannigan and Ewan Chalmers, and Wildcats, Leigh Kasperek and Kari Carswell were present throughout the day, and together with the coaching team, guided the many intrigued participants around.

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What was so pleasing about the day’s activities was the diverse range of people giving it a go – from corporate bankers to groups of international students, tourists and children off all-ages.

The feedback that has been received after the event has been extremely encouraging, one member of the public said, “I attended the Cricket Factory event today with my eleven year old son – first of all a huge thank you for what was a superb advertisement both for the game and for your players and coaches who were just terrific. My son has just started playing cricket and he loves it – he is a big Saltires fan to boot!” (Jake Perry).

The President of the ICC, Alan Isaac dropped in and was able to witness first-hand the enthusiasm for the game in Scotland. He certainly wasn’t afraid of giving it a go, clocking up a few impressive scores on the speed throw!

Chris Porter and Nick Pink from ICC Europe also popped in and renowned cricket photographer Ian Jacobs captured a flavour of the day with some spectacular photos.

The relationship between Cricket Scotland and Cricket Factory is a long-standing development partnership that was accentuated by Cricket Scotland’s Development Manager, Steve Paige “I’m delighted with how the day has gone and the fact that over 400 people took part in the day’s activities. This has been the fruition of 3 years work with Peter and the team at Cricket Factory and it has been a fantastic advert for cricket and the feedback from participants has been great.”

At the end of the day, Cricket Factory’s Pete Gray commented, “Festival Square was a great opportunity to showcase the impact of the Cricket Scotland Cricket Factory partnership. With a wide age range of participants Cricket Scotland players and coaches were able to demonstrate how much fun and accessible cricket can be using the Cricket Factory equipment. It was a very successful event and we look forward to working with Cricket Scotland in the future in supporting them to grow the game”.

All in all, it was a day where cricket was undoubtedly the winner.

Normally seen shooting the action on the Field it was great to have Ian Jacobs with us on the Event.

He spent the whole day at Festival Square in Edinburgh in conjunction with Cricket Scotland, as the National Team held a ‘Public Participation’ day: inviting passers by to try their hand at the many different challenges in the Cricket Factory Rig. As you can see Ian really captured the spirit of the day in the pictures seen above.

For a number of years now, Ian has been the ICC photographer of choice for many Associate and Affiliate tournaments throughout the world. His exciting, imaginative images have made photo editors in countries not usually associated with the sport such as Italy, Norway and Spain sit up and take notice.

His work appears extensively in the book ‘Out of the Ashes’ which chronicles the rise of the Afghanistan cricket team and, along with photo behemoth, Getty Images, the bulk of the photographs in the new ICC Development book.

At the end of the day Ian told us “I really enjoyed myself today, I can’t believe the reaction – it’s been a fantastic day with many people, young and old, giving it their best shot.” He added “The ground breaking Cricket Factory equipment is just what’s needed to make the game more accessible and would be a welcome addition to the PE department in our schools.”

Ian Jacobs Photography

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