RBHS gets indoor cricket centre

2019-05-21 06:01
How the cricket centre will look once it is complete.

How the cricket centre will look once it is complete.

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Rondebosch Boys’ High School (RBHS) will soon have their new indoor cricket centre as construction for the centre began on Monday 13 May.

The school held a sod-turning event on Friday 10 May and if all goes according to plan, construction should take between seven to eight months, and the facility will be complete for the start of 2020.

School principal Shaun Simpson said the centre is being built on the north-east side of the A cricket oval, across the road from the old swimming pool wall, adding that the road on the poolside will, for safety reasons, be fenced off in a way that allows the contractors easy access with ladders and machinery but will remain open to one-way school traffic for the time being.

“Please be aware of this as you approach the construction site and be patient and considerate if construction workers or equipment blocks access for a short period,” says Simpson.

Simpson adds that he is pleased to be able to inform the school community about the construction.

“This project has been a long time in the planning; we first began to explore this possibility in 2013, but the main obstacles have been finance and the fact that there have been a number of more urgent priorities – one of those was adding to the classrooms to be able to expand our intake. Clearly moving from suggestion to planning, to reality has been painfully slow. Even once the project became a reality, there were still a number of bureaucratic hoops to jump through and it is therefore very exciting to be able to get going at long last,” he says.

According to the letter, the Carleton Lloyd Education Trust will finance most of the cost of the project which has, through inputs from members of the Rondebosch community of professionals, been substantially reduced from the earliest estimates. “We are most grateful to the Carleton Lloyd Education Trust, to Robert Wagner our foundation officer, and also to the various professionals of our community for their contributions to this project.

“As far as prioritising this particular building is concerned, cricket is a sport that requires a great deal of technical coaching. It is desirable to do the vast majority of technical work in the off-season and only do minor adjustments in season,” he says.

With Cape Town’s winter rainfall, training outdoors becomes a daunting task and Simpson has no doubt that the centre will bring much-needed relief.

“Added to this is the ability to make use of the advances in technology which assist coaches to help players improve their skills,” he says.

Rondebosch Boys’ has a long history of cricket achievement and a number of their pupils have gone on to play cricket at provincial and national level.

Simpson admits that to some extent in terms of embracing new technologies, they have lagged behind some of the other top cricket schools; this centre will add dimension to their coaching. “We are also excited that Gary Kirsten has indicated a strong interest in moving the Gary Kirsten Cricket Academy (GKCA) to this new facility. Prospective students will be comparing the opportunities available to improve their skills at various schools as part of their decision-making process. The addition of the indoor centre and the potential of using the expertise of coaches at GKCA will certainly assist us to attract top talent,” he says.

GKCA works with disadvantaged cricket players in the local townships and identifies young talent.

“While offering a place for winter and focused cricket training to the school, we would hope that an additional benefit of the centre is that our boys could become involved in the training of learners from previously disadvantaged communities,” he says.

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