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Cricket

There can be few more delightful settings for cricket than the grounds at Canford. The school Cricket Club aims to ensure that all pupils who enjoy the game have a fulfilling and memorable school cricket career in these wonderful surroundings.

The Club pursues this mission by providing as much competitive cricket as possible through a challenging school fixtures list, as well as keenly fought house match competitions. These fixtures are designed to provide an outlet for talent at all levels for both boys and girls.  The Club enjoys a fine reputation and match play success, while on an individual level there are currently many County players in the school, including selection for the Hampshire Development side.

The Club aims to ensure that each cricketer develops his skills to their full potential. A number of present and former pupils have played at junior level for county and area teams, and for their local clubs. There is a programme of winter coaching in the Sports Centre at both squad and individual level. During the season, training takes place in both grass and artificial nets, and there are regular middle practices on the four pitches within the school grounds. Facilities are excellent and a range of activities and equipment are employed throughout the club.

Our girls cricket section is a summer sports option and is going from strength to strength, We also hosts the Lady Taverners competition.

The Under 10 Prep School Tournament in April/May is a fast and furious festival of emerging talent that each year introduces a new generation to the delights of cricket at Canford, while each Easter the club runs a cricket coaching course for keen cricketers in Years 5-7.

Coaching Expertise

Expert coaching is provided by Matt Keech (a qualified ECB tutor and former professional cricketer). Matt joined Canford in 2012 having spent 12 years as a professional cricketer with Hampshire and Middlesex (winning the County Championship with Middlesex). After retiring, he has coached at various clubs around the world including teams in Australia and New Zealand. Coaching the Shells XI allows him to share the school and cricket clubs ethos as soon as they arrive at school.

Julian Shackleton takes the school 1XI but alongside Matt coaches all sides through the school week. Julian (formerly of Gloucestershire and Hampshire) has been with the school many years, as was his father, Derek Shackleton, before him.

Our team managers (a number of whom are keen and talented cricketers themselves) encourage the development of technical skills, tactical awareness and a genuine affinity with the spirit of cricket: we ensure that sportsmanship, positive play and an identification with team achievement are seen as at least as important as individual success.

Partnership with Dorset Cricket

Canford has close links with County cricket.   The current partnership with Dorset offers pupils bespoke coaching opportunities and staff have the chance to attend UKCC Level 2 coaching courses and individual INSET training sessions run by Dorset Cricket.

We also have strong links with many first class counties with numerous pupils on county pathway programs.