In the first week of the October holidays a St Bede’s College Cricket Development team toured Australia following an initiative from the Committee of the St Bede’s Cricket Club.
The 14 man squad was selected by the College’s Director of Cricket & former Black Cap, Shanan Stewart, and included boys from Year 10 through Year 13. The emphasis of the 6-game Tour was the development of younger players with a view to a number of them representing St Bede’s well in future years.
The cricket experience for the boys was something that they should remember for a long time. The opportunity to play cricket in a country where cricket is a passion and is the national summer sport was inspiring – to have the chance to play “pre-season cricket” in warm, dry weather on pitches that provided excellent batting & bowling conditions was the real benefit of the trip. The standard of our opposition on tour was generally well-matched to the level of the SBC team. Over the 6 games, playing time was spread evenly amongst all 14 boys and it was pleasing that the younger boys fitted in well, were not overawed, and certainly were able to learn aspects of the game required at 1st XI level. A highlight for the boys was the chance to play a T20 match under lights. Every match day the Coach spent one-on-one sessions with the boys as they were available – a true advantage of a tour of this type.
Skipper Jack Boyle (Yr 13) lead the way with the bat scoring an impressive 439 runs in 6 innings at an average of 96.00 – his 3 tons on tour brings the number of centuries Jack has scored for the 1st XI to a College record of eight. Congratulations Jack – this is a fabulous achievement. Jordan Watts (Yr 12) scored his maiden century for St Bede’s and along with Blake Doherty (Yr 13) averaged in the 30’s for the tour.
From the bowling perspective wickets were evenly spread. Taylor Irie (Yr 11) with 12 wickets and Vinny Lucas (Yr 10) with 10 wickets were the leading wicket-takers.
This year’s Development Tour was the first of this type undertaken by a St Bede’s team. It is hoped that sufficient benefits from the viewpoint of cricket development within the College are realised which could see this tour becoming a biennial event. It should be regarded as a tour to which all boys who play cricket for St Bede’s teams should aspire.
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