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Andrew White NCU Cricket Academy - Class of 2017-2018

Richard White

The successful Andrew White NCU Cricket Academy now moves into its third year of operation. The 2017-18 Academy programme was launched recently with a parents and players meeting held during the NSPCC 'Parents in Sport Week', acknowledging the key role parents play in supporting their children in sport.

Following a recent review of the Academy, the NCU Representative Directorate agreed that the 2017-18 Academy intake will focus on players within the 16-21 age group, who have the potential to gain future Senior Interprovincial and/or Senior International representative honours. With the Senior Interprovincials carrying First Class and List A status, as well as the recent fantastic news that Ireland has become a Full Member of the ICC, the future direction of the Academy had to take this into consideration.

Angela Platt General Manager of the Northern Cricket Union says, 'The Andrew White Academy is an important part of the NCU talent development pathway. The Academy programme provides an excellent framework for supporting our most talented young players to achieve their goals and aspirations, as well as preparing them for future interprovincial and international representation. The high standard of service provision secured by Andrew this year will provide excellent opportunities for our talented cricketers to develop and work towards achieving their full potential. Congratulations to all players selected for the Academy and I look forward to watching their development over the coming year'.

The 2017-18 intake includes some players returning for a second year, along with several new faces who will hopefully learn from the expertise and experience that Andrew offers, along with the numerous coaches that will assist throughout the winter.

Prior to the Academy programme beginning players had a unique opportunity to attend a recent Question and Answer session with three Ireland Senior International players: William Porterfield (Ireland Captain), Ed Joyce and Boyd Rankin. This proved hugely beneficial in setting the scene for the Academy programme for the year ahead.

The first official Academy session will take place on Wednesday 11th October at the Ulster University (Jordanstown Campus), proud partners of the Academy, where players will participate in a physical training and team building session led by the highly regarded Irish Boxing High Performance Coach, John Conlan.

As well as the player development opportunities that will be provided during the winter training programme the Academy members will also participate in an intensive, high-performance training Camp in South Africa from 21st March to 5th April 2018 (inclusive).

Speaking at the start of another Academy intake Andrew said, 'I and the other NCU Coaches are looking forward to working with this exciting group of young cricketers. They are at various stages of their development but I want to make sure that they are placed in environments that will challenge and inspire them to go to the next level. The underlying theme will be 'preparing to win'. We can all get carried away with just trying to win but I think it's important that the players learn how to prepare, in order to win and with that in mind, we will be enlisting the help of some of the best support and resources in order to enhance that knowledge and understanding'.

The Academy intake for 2017-18 is:

Luke Allison Reece Malone
Jack Burton John Matchett
Max Burton James Metcalfe
Matthew Foster Oliver Metcalfe
Sam Gordon James Mitchell
James Hunter Morgan Topping
Archie Johnston Harry Warke
James Magee Aaron Wright
Jamie Magowan  

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