King’s College, Taunton, have enjoyed another hugely successful season, during which three cup finals have been won, and the 1st XI have remained unbeaten in all regular fixtures against all school opposition for the second time in three years. The Under 15A team lifted the English School’s Cricket Association National Cup by beating Whitgift School in the semi-final before disposing of Solihull in the final at Oakham School.
King’s Under 14As beat Millfield for the third consecutive year in the Somerset County Cup final with a team that included two girls, and were unbeaten against all school opposition. The Girls’ Under 15 team reached the indoor regional finals day and won the Broderick Cup, while the Girls’ First XI beat Millfield and only narrowly lost to a strong MCC side.
The King’s College Player of the Season was Tom Banton who is now in the Somerset Academy; the Young Player of the Season was Sam Wyatt, who plays for Cornwall and is in the Somerset Emerging Player Programme. The Girls’ Player of the Season went to Charlotte Milner.
The Director of Cricket, Phil Lewis, said: “This is a hugely exciting time for the young cricketers at King’s who will soon be able to train in a brand new state of the art cricket centre at King’s, which will hopefully be in use for January 2017. We have an all-year-round cricket provision, and, working with ex-pros Ben Phillips, Rob Woodman and Dennis Breakwell, pupils benefit from group work, one-to-one sessions and a strength and conditioning programme. Pupils push each other and enhance and support each other’s performances. Our highly enthusiastic coaches offer support and knowledge as part of one big cricket family.”
Reflecting on the continued success of cricket at King’s, Nick Gresswell the Director of Sport said: “The success of the cricket programme has been achieved through long term player development and a high quality coaching structure that is embraced by all the staff who lead teams under the direction of Phil Lewis.
King’s have developed a highly effective coaching model that seeks to help each player and team achieve their full potential whilst fundamentally enjoying their experience. All the staff involved are dedicated towards these goals and it has proved exceptionally successful. The school has developed an effective support mechanism, with Somerset CCC as an academy partner. The EPP programme created at the school supports male and female athletes at all levels across the wide spectrum of sporting requirements covering technical, tactical, lifestyle, conditioning and mentoring skills. The strength of the King’s model is not simply focused at an elite level. The participation base is wide and buoyant. Young players of all ages and abilities are encouraged and supported every step of the way to help nurture their skills and love of the game. This broad outlook has promoted a deep affinity for the game within the school community and a sense of accessibility. This is only made possible by the fact that the coaches are mostly teachers within the school who are a readily available source of encouragement every day. They have taken the opportunity to develop their coaching skills and experiences and this has allowed the programme to achieve such wonderful results.”