Cricket West Indies coaching course begins

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

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Cricket West Indies opened its long-awaited Certified Level One Coaching Course at Sabina Park in Kingston under cloudy skies yesterday.

Twenty-five coaches from across the island and one from the United States of America assembled in the Club Lounge of the George Headley stand for the start of the five-day course, which runs until Saturday at the same venue.

The instructors for the course are Philip Service, territorial development officer for Jamaica; Gibbs Williams and Cleon Smith, national cricket coach and coach for the Jamaica's senior women's team respectively.

Smith is also the coach of the Northern Panthers, which is one of the six teams in the Jamaica Elite League. Williams on the other hand is a senior lecturer at G C Foster College, as well as the coach of the Combined Universities and Colleges in the Elite League. The participants will be assessed by Kumar Rapat, the territorial development officer (TDO) for Trinidad & Tobago and Junior Mitchum, TDO of the Leeward Isalnds.

Some of the course participants are well known current and former national representatives. They include Gary Graham out of Manchester, Marlon Johnson and Odean Brown. In addition to the parish of Manchester, the participants also come from Trelawny, St Ann, St Mary, St Thomas, St Catherine, Kingston and St Andrew.

The course will include theory and practical sessions, as well as a written exam on the final day. A look at the course outline shows various topics such as batting, fast bowling, spin bowling, fielding, wicket keeping, biomechanics, fitness in cricket, mental fitness, lesson plan writing and introduction to how children learn, among other topics.

President of the Jamaica Cricket Association (JCA), Billy Heaven, who spoke at the official opening of the course, encouraged the participants learn all that they can as the game needs to improve in short order so that it can remain viable for all the stakeholders. According to Heaven, very soon the JCA will be working with ISSA to ensure that all coaches in the system are at least Level One-certified by 2019. He also announced that come January 2018 a Level Two course will be conducted for those coaches who qualify to matriculate to that level.

Philip Service, who leads the planning team, said that the course was very important at this time. He also said that all the participants had to pass through several hurdles in order to be considered for the Level One coaching course. They had to complete the foundation course as well as the WICB Child Protection Course. Additionally, they had to have first aid certification and a valid police record.

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