19th June, England v South Africa, 09:30 GMT
Members of the University of East London’s as yet unbeaten cricket team were invited to an exhilarating training session with nine of Essex County Cricket Club’s first team players. The team, along with their coaches and three of UEL’s elite cricketers went through various activities designed to develop essential bowling and fielding skills.
The University’s handball coach, Sunniva Ness, also showed the players a thing or two in a unique training activity combining the two sports. Chairman of the London Handball Association, Chris Smith explained: "Coaches are always looking for cross-training opportunities; Cricket and Handball have very similar skills that can help assemble an all-round player."
Following the training session, the team also took part in a Q&A session with UEL sports students.
Essex Head Coach, Paul Grayson, said "The facilities here are outstanding; you can see why the USA Team wanted to come here for the Olympics. We had a great workout and fielding session this morning. I look forward to the relationship between UEL and Essex becoming more permanent."
Tymal Mills, a UEL student, now playing for Essex first team himself, following his England Lions debut last year said "UEL achieved an award for being the most improved university for sport last year, and you can see why. Cricket has come a long way here; it’s now taken much more seriously."
UEL student and future cricketing hopeful, Alistair Wood, enthused: "What an unbelievable experience, it’s the equivalent of training with Manchester United. You just don’t get this kind of opportunity every day."
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