Pakistan international Saeed Ajmal stars at Wicketz Festival
Pakistan international bowler Saeed Ajmal passed on his top tips to youngsters on the Lord’s Taverners Wicketz Programme Festival at Felsted School last week.
Off-spinner Ajmal, who played 35 tests and 133 one day internationals for his country taking more than 350 wickets, visited the three-day Wicketz residential at the school in Essex which was attended by youngsters from Tower Hamlets, West Ham and Luton.
For many of the young people involved in the Wicketz programme, taking a break from inner-city life is often quite a difficult thing to be able to do. The Wicketz residential provided over 40 young cricketers from disadvantaged backgrounds the chance to not only hone their cricketing skills with the help of Ajmal and other coaching staff, but also share in valuable life lessons from motivational speaker Chris Syrus.
On day one, the young cricketers enjoyed batting, bowling, and fielding sessions with coaches from Middlesex. On day two, Ajmal treated the youngsters to a fantastic session in the nets in which batsmen had the once in a lifetime opportunity to face an international off-spinner as he provided step by step tutorials on how to improve bowling technique.
The festival culminated in a final day of matches involving players that represented the three participating clubs from Tower Hamlets Wicketz CC, West Ham Wicketz CC, and Luton Wicketz CC. Congratulations to every participant for what was a brilliant three days of cricket in a beautiful setting with special applause going to the following prize winners:
Het Patel (Best Bowler)
Harris Latif (Best Batsman)
Thomas Munday (Most Improved)
Abdus Salaam (Spirit of Cricket Award)
Reece Hale (Best Newcomer)
Samin Yasar (Champagne Moment)
Lord’s Taverners Cricket Programmes Manager, Henry Hazlewood said: “It has been amazing to see so many new and returning faces at Felsted School this year. The quality of play and the spirit shown has been really pleasing to see and it was fantastic for these youngsters to learn from current pro, Saeed Ajmal.”
Wicketz Programme Mentor for West Ham, Manav Patel added: "Playing at Felsted and using the great pitches was amazing. Cricket is a great sport because we get to meet new people, make new friends and come to places like this so thank you to the Lord’s Taverners and Felsted School for a great three days."
Special thanks to Felsted School for providing us with such fantastic facilities and also to the International Cricketers Association for providing the young Wicketz participants the opportunity to meet Saeed Ajmal!
For more information on our Wicketz programme, please click here.