Fifty-two (52) primary school cricket coaches were formally trained and certified by Cricket Australia after participating in a recent weeklong workshop in the Atlantic Coaching Excellence (ACE) programme.
The workshop was conducted by Cricket Australia Instructor, Darren Holder and exposed thirty (30) coaches to international best practice in Level 1 cricket skills and another twenty-two (22) to Level 2 cricket skills, equipping both groups to more professionally groom their under-13 charges who participate in the annual Atlantic National Primary Schools Cricket League competition.
Since its inception in 2013, ACE has now certified 410 cricket coaches from across Trinidad and Tobago (374 at Level 1 and 36 at Level 2). Derek Daniel, Branding and Communications Manager, Atlantic explained that the ACE programme is endorsed by the Ministry of Education and will form part of the requirement for all coaches involved in the National Primary Schools Cricket and Football Leagues. Coaches must be registered with the respective national sporting body and must be actively involved in coaching at the primary school level.
“Atlantic is quite satisfied with the level of progress we are seeing in primary school cricket since we introduced the ACE program,” Daniel said. “The coaches are now better able to nurture and develop the natural talent that is very much available in all eight educational districts and you can see it with the number of exceptional performances this season, for example Maria La Foucade from Guayaguayare RC who with 182 runs and 4 wickets helped her team win the Atlantic National Primary Schools Cricket League Girls Championships .”
Cricket Australia Instructor, Darren Holder said that based on the enthusiasm of the participating coaches, local primary school cricket was in safe hands.
“Following the recent success of the West Indies teams in the U19 World Cup and in the Senior Female and Male T20 World Cups, it was great to see the eagerness of the coaches to improve their coaching abilities to share with the next generation of aspiring cricketers,” Holder said. “The challenge remains for all coaches to provide a fantastic learning environment for the boys and girls to fall in love with cricket and develop a deep desire to grow as young people, develop their skills and compete and succeed.”
Brent Francis, President of the Atlantic National Primary Schools Cricket League affirmed the value of training and certifying the coaches. “Programmes like ACE play an integral part in ensuring our coaches receive the best training possible in order to nurture the talents of budding cricketers,” Francis said. “The 2016 season is a good indication of what is to come.”
The Atlantic Coaching Excellence (ACE) program was launched by LNG producer Atlantic in 2013 as a means of providing coaches with certifiable levels of professional training that would help ensure the holistic physical and emotional development of primary school athletes. ACE certified cricket coaches are granted automatic access to Cricket Australia’s database where they receive valuable updates on the sport. Coaches must also be recertified every three years.