WHEN Ivybridge youngsters start winter training next month they will be benefiting from a David Shepherd Cricket Trust grant.
The South Hams club runs four teams in the Palladium West Devon Youth league from under-11 to under-15 level.
Around 60 young cricketers are part of the youth section at Ivybridge – girls as well as boys.
They have clearly been doing something right at Ivybridge as the Kopparambil brothers – Jacob and Abraham – Ben Privett and Charlotte Milner have all played county age-group cricket.
Abraham and Jacob won awards at the Devon Cricket Board presentation evening in Exeter last month.
Additionally, another 12 players are part of West Devon squads that feed into the county age group sides.
Youth cricket is growing all the time at Ivybridge and to keep it thriving coaches want to make training sessions the best they can be.
A grant of £400 towards venue costs this winter has freed up cash to spend on training aids, such as batting tees, bowling machine balls and conditioning apparatus such as speed ladders and agility cones.
Jon Sparkes, the Ivybridge treasurer, said winter coaching helps young cricketers of all ages and abilities.
“We will be running indoor training sessions for our colts from early December through to mid-April indoors, as we have in previous years.
“These sessions are both for players who have played before and new starters.
“We have seen an increase in numbers attending sessions particularly towards the end of the summer and anticipate a greater demand for winter training as a result.
“We also anticipate having to provide more support to our more talented players, some of whom may not get the opportunity to train with West Devon this winter if District sessions are being reduced in number.”
Three sessions will take place prior to Christmas for more experienced players at South Dartmoor Leisure Centre with the general sessions starting in January at Ivybridge Community College.
Ivybridge have recruited eight new members to the Trust as part of the grant-award process.
Richard Wyatt-Haines, the secretary of the David Shepherd Cricket Trust, said Ivybridge are undertaking the sort of work the Trust is keen to support.
“We want to encourage youngsters to play our great game and quality coaching really helps them on the way,” said Wyatt-Haines.
“It is also pleasing to see Ivybridge recruiting new members for the Trust.
“A strong membership base is crucial to the success of our work and at just £10 a year for an individual it is an inexpensive way to help the next generation of cricketers make their way.”
To apply for a coaching grant from the David Shepherd Cricket Trust, or become a member, visit www.dsct111.org.uk
Clubs must to be a member of the Trust to apply for a grant.