Recognition for King’s cricket
THE King’s School has been selected as one of the top 100 schools in the United Kingdom for cricket by the Cricketer Magazine.
The sporting bible judged their selection on the quality of coaching, the range of fixtures, extent of facilities and the quality of cricketer making their way into the professional ranks and League cricket.
Head of Cricket Steve Moores oversees teams at First and Second team level, under, 15, under-14, under 13 and under 12 with the 12s and 13s running B sides and occasionally C sides.
The school has a main pitch on Cumberland Street, which is a prominent feature in the town centre, an all weather pitch on the Westminster Road site, three more grass squares at the Derby playing fields and pitches for junior and girls’ cricket at Fence Avenue.
In any one season the first team will play around 22 fixtures with team coming from as far away as Edinburgh, but with annual derby matches against sides like the Manchester Grammar School and Sedbergh very much the highlight. King’s has always enjoyed a high ratio of wins to losses even in moderate years and occasionally teams have gone unbeaten.
The school has extensive all weather outdoor nets at Westminster Road, but uses the Leisure Centre for winter indoor training.
The school has pro- duced only a handful of first class cricketers most notably Steve’s brother Peter, who is the former England coach and as a player was a stalwart of Sussex, but has a wonderful record of producing minor counties stars and feeding scores of players in the local leagues.
In the 2016 season former King’s captains James Lomas, Tom Foreman and Alan Day all made their debuts for the Cheshire 1st XI with James Duffy and Khalid Sawas already accomplished Cheshire players.
Johnny Marsden has been asked to captain the Oxford university side next season and will be playing first class cricket against some of the top players in the country. In recent years former captain James Duffy, Tom Tim Forman, James Lomas, Alan Day and Tom Parfitt have played and or captained Cheshire.
In addition to the top quality cricketing staff, the school uses skilled young Australian cricketers to help coach King’s young talent, plus it also recruits specialist coaches such as First Team batting specialist former Lancashire star Andy Kennedy and top local coach Fred Slater.
Steve Moores said: “Our advice to any father or mother wanting their son or daughter son? to play cricket is to get a bat and ball in their hands at as early an age as possible.
“The partnership with local clubs has improved immensely in the last 10 to 20 years and many local clubs run superb under 7, under 8 and under 9 sides and we often see cricketers come to us already with high skill levels.
“Above all allow them to enjoy the game, enjoy the competition and don’t over coach them. Some youngsters will come to us with a good shape at the crease and good technique but don’t want to hit the ball; encourage your son or daughter to hit the ball hard.”
The school has toured extensively with trips to Sri lanka (instead of Pakistan)Pakistan, Grenada and Barbados in recent years and more in the planning.
Steve Moores added: “More and more state and independent school have excellent facilities so we are delighted to be chosen by the Cricketer Magazine. Generations of former cricketers remember their days playing King’s cricket with great affection and we want to maintain that long tradition.”
●● King’s top young players William Hodgson, Angus Thomson, George Holden, Owen Jones and Joey Chong with coach Steve Moores.