Legends share the love of the game

2019-12-17 06:00
Players from Rondebosch Boys’ Preparatory School soak up Jonty’s words at the Rondebosch Sports Club.

Players from Rondebosch Boys’ Preparatory School soak up Jonty’s words at the Rondebosch Sports Club.

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The Proteas’ poor performance during the Cricket World Cup and the recent tour to India has left many fans worried about the state of the game. 

Ryan Maron, former West Indies and Afghanistan assistant coach and the director of Cricket School of Excellence (CSE), however, says there is light at the end of the tunnel.

“We have enough talent in South Africa, but we are not getting the best out of our players. We need to have the right people in vital roles and not allow administration and politics to get in the way.”

The Constantia resident says the Proteas are under pressure to play well during the upcoming English tour, especially in the wake of the turmoil surrounding Cricket South Africa (CSA). 

Maron has been sharing his advice and experience with young cricket players for the past 20 years at his cricket school based at the GK Oval (Rondebosch Boys’ Preparatory School (RBPS) Main Oval).

CSE was founded in 1999 and has grown to become one of the country’s leading cricket schools and also has branches in the North West and Johannesburg. 

About a year ago, Maron partnered with former Protea’s cricketer Jonty Rhodes to host High-Performance Clinics around the globe. 

These clinics promote the Jonty Rhodes Way (JRW) – to focus on the basics and to always give 100%. 

Successful camps have been held in Nepal, Malawi, Zimbabwe, Sri Lanka, India, Pakistan and, more recently, at the newly-renovated Rondebosch Sports Club.

Jonty, together with Maron and former provincial fast bowler Keith Ingram, hosted a High-Performance Clinic for u.9 players at the club in November. About 20 learners from RBPS participated in the two-day camp. 

People’s Post caught up with Maron – and 105 aspiring cricketers – last week at the GK Oval where he was overseeing the first of two CSE summer cricket holiday clinics. The four-day clinic, which began on 9 December, ran to a set programme from 09:00 to 13:00 daily. 

Leaving the training in the hands of 10 capable coaches, Maron stepped away for a few minutes to share the cricket school’s vision. 

He says the school, which is open to children of all ages and ability, aims to develop superstars in a fun environment through technical and behavioural training. 

“All these kids have the potential to take it forward. But the hunger has to come from inside. Sometimes parents place too much pressure on kids. That’s the fastest way for them to lose interest. You have to let them work it out for themselves,” he says.

Rondebosch dad, Zaheer Nosarka says his Grade 3 son, Yusuf, has learnt so much from coaches at CSE. 

“Sport is about much more than competing. 

“It is about camaraderie, friendship and learning how to cope with life’s ups and downs,” Nozarka says.

He says he likes the way the children are divided into groups as it is not done according to their skill. 

“They are given the chance to interact with kids they normally would not play with,” says Nosarka.

Maron says the cricket school aspires to make its training accessible.

“Through our partnerships with the Australian High Commission in 2015 and 2016, we were able to touch the lives of young cricketers at Langa and Khayelitsha Cricket Club through Adopt a School, township clinics and local clinics, including the township boys and Elite high-performance training for 15- to 19-year-olds,” he says.

CSE asks companies or individuals interested in lending support to contact the school on 021 671 0854 or 082 491 7506.

V  The next four-day summer cricket holiday clinic runs from Friday 7 to Monday 10 January. There are still a few spots available. The cost is usually R750 per child. To book, contact ryan@cricketschool.co.za. 

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