THE 2013 staging of the Supreme Ventures/Courtney Walsh Cricket Clinics and Camps started yesterday with a whole-day assessment at the Melbourne Cricket Club.
Walsh, the conceptualiser of the event, which is now in its seventh year, said the coaches overseeing the young participants focused on key areas of the game.
"Today (yesterday) is more like a talent search. We are looking at the kids... it's the first time we are seeing them, so we are making an assessment. We are going to have a summer camp later this year, so we are trying to see who we can have.
"We are looking at batting, bowling, fielding and the hand-eye coordination. We get a chance to see what they are good at. Some might be able to bat, but can't bowl that well, and so forth," the former West Indies captain told the Jamaica Observer.
He suggested that at that tender age it is most important the players develop a love for the sport.
"It's been running now for seven years and we are just trying to encourage the kids to play this wonderful game of cricket. (For) some of them it is the first they are playing with the leather ball, so we also have to take that into consideration. We are not really coaching specifics today (yesterday), but we are still giving them a few tips here and there," the fast bowling legend said.
Walsh expressed pleasure at the level of participation, but added that a concerted effort has been made to ensure the camps are not over-subscribed.
"The turnout has been tremendous, but the last couple of seasons we have tried to stick to the numbers that we ask for so that it doesn't become unmanageable for the coaches. We are looking for quality over quantity," he said.
In the early phases of yesterday's session, Walsh was assisted by former West Indies left-handed opener Robert Samuels, as well as Wayne Cuff, Wayne Morgan and Ray Stewart.
— Sanjay Myers