Muscat – Over the past week, youngsters from the Mote Colts Cricket Club were at home at the Oman Cricket Academy (OCA) grounds in Al Amerat. So impressed were the visitors with the top-class facilities that they have begun talks with Oman Cricket (OC) to have a trip organised every year.
The U15 team from the Mote Colts Cricket Club concluded a week-long camp in the Sultanate of Oman during which they played three matches, including two T20 games and a 40-over-a-side match.
While the honours were shared by the OCA lads and the Mote Colts in the T20 matches, the other match was won by the hosts.
The director of Mote Colts Cricket Club, Ian Hume, said: “For a club based in Maidstone, Kent in England, this has been a unique experience for all the touring party. The facilities at the Oman Cricket Academy are superb – from the indoor nets to Test-grade wickets. Our boys have been lucky enough to experience all the facilities. We had a good series of matches and excellent cricket was displayed by both sides.
“We would like to say a big thank you to Oman Cricket Academy and we look forward to coming back next year.”
OCA and national U19 coach Adeel Shafique said: “The world-class facilities at the OCA grounds left a lasting impression on the visiting side. Their visit is a culmination of talks over the past two and a half years. The talks were initiated by the Late Iqbal Ariwala of Oman Cricket during his tenure as OC administration manager. He had introduced me to the local contact [Gavin] who then put me through to Ian Hume at the Mote Colts Cricket Club.”
“After a series of discussions, the trip was finalised. We are happy to have the Mote colts arrive in Oman with a contingent of 42. The squad includes 14 young cricketers and their parents and guardians,” he said.
Duleep Mendis, OC chief development officer, said: “We are delighted to have played host to Mote Colts. It was nice to watch our boys at the OCA, under coach Evert Laubscher, play against the talented bunch from Kent. It was a good experience for our boys.”
Mote Colts Cricket Club was formed in 1997. The club began with one side in the Maidstone and District Under 13 League and coaching to a small group of boys with ages ranging from 12 to 15.
Sixteen seasons later the club is now a thriving section of the Mote Cricket Club where over 70 boys are now coached in various age groups from six to 15 and sides compete in three leagues throughout Kent.
Shafique added: “After the conclusion of their trip, Hume has expressed his strong interest to bring his club colts to Oman every year and also suggested having a bilateral series. We plan to take our academy boys to the UK in May-June next. It will be good to know how our boys fare against them and vice-versa.”