The inaugural Fasken Martineau Time Cricket Festival, hosted by St David’s Marist Inanda, Johannesburg, from 31 August to 3 September 2017, aims to give school cricketers the opportunity to start developing the skills and mindset required to play at Test level.
The festival will feature teams from St Stithians College (Johannesburg), Maritzburg College (Pietermaritzburg), St Alban’s College (Pretoria), King Edward VII School (Johannesburg), St Andrew’s School (Bloemfontein) and St David’s Marist Inanda. Matches will be played over two days, with unlimited overs per innings (two innings per side). The games start at 9.30am each day.
Former coach of the Titans, the Lions and Somerset County Cricket Club in the UK, Dave Nosworthy, who is now director of cricket at St David’s, says this format encourages a tougher mindset.
“The best young Test cricketers in South Africa, Kagiso Rabada (who attended St Stithians) and Temba Bavuma (St David’s Marist Inanda), went to schools where cricket is played. To breed top cricketers, you need to allow them to bat for long periods, to bowl several spells in a day, and to develop their thinking and their patience.”
Nosworthy adds that, with the exception of Australian cricketer David Warner, most of the world’s top batsmen mastered the game’s longer format before establishing themselves in the 20-over version. “We play T20 cricket throughout the year, but this festival gives players a chance to go into the new season with confidence, having had proper time in the middle.”
Law firm, Fasken Martineau, have come on board as title sponsors. “We see the partnership with St David’s Marist Inanda as an outcome of a distinct fit between our corevalues and those of the school and the purpose of the Time Cricket Festival,” says Fasken Martineau Chairman Lucas Moalusi.
Bradley Ireland, College Deputy Headmaster: Extramurals: “This festival is a pre-season event and we want to encourage the coaches and the players to use it as part of their preparation for the upcoming season. We want to allow opportunities for batsmen to build an innings, for bowlers to settle into a rhythm, and for coaches to experiment with different combinations. We want to see a fair contest between bat and ball. The nature of the longer version of the game is probably better suited to these particular objectives than the limited overs and T20 formats.
The captains will no doubt face varying situations during the match that will test their strategic nous. They will encounter opportunities to be very attacking, as well as times to go on the defensive. We anticipate some longer spells from some of the bowlers and some substantial innings from the batsmen.
School sport is an important part of the education process. Sport can be used to teach many important lessons. The majority of the boys participating this festival have been involved in cricket for many years. They have invested much time, effort and energy to reach this point. The experience gained and lessons learned during that process are more important than a single cricket match. Regardless of the final results, we hope that each boy will gain something positive from the time spent at this festival. Ultimately we want each of these boys to be a step closer to becoming the fine young men that we can be proud of.
Our intention in the future is to continue with a similar festival where we are able to bring together like-minded schools, players and coaches to provide opportunities to enjoy this great game.”
Fasken Martineau Time Cricket Festival fixtures
31 August to 1 September:
St David’s Marist Inanda vs St Alban’s College (McGregor Oval); St Stithians College vs Maritzburg College (Gier Oval); King Edward VII School vs St Andrew’s College (La Valla Oval)
2 September to 3 September:
St David’s Marist Inanda vs Maritzburg College (La Valla Oval); St Alban’s vs St Andrew’s (Gier Oval); King Edward VII School vs St Stithians College (McGregor Oval)