Hot tips for stars of future

Adam PoulsenGeraldton Guardian

Some of Geraldton’s top junior cricketers had the chance to learn from the best when the Perth Scorchers’ Sam Whiteman held a talent session last Wednesday.

The champion batsman and wicketkeeper taught cricketers aged eight to 17 a range of techniques, from fundamental skills through to more unorthodox methods.

Those selected for the session were part of a Mid West Cricket Board talent squad who have been training for the past six weeks.

Whiteman was in Geraldton with fellow State and national cricketing dignitaries for a series of on and off-field engagements.

He said it was rewarding to pass on his knowledge to the next generation of potential champions.

“I do enjoy coaching, and it’s especially good to come to a regional area which probably doesn’t get too many Warriors or Scorchers coming through,” Whiteman said.

“Obviously batting and wicket-keeping is my specialty, but I’ll also look for general things and just see how I can help out.”

West Australian Cricket Association Mid West regional development manager Ryan Hosking said it was an opportunity not to be missed.

“Sam’s a country boy, so he’s been in these kids’ shoes before, and any tips and experience he can pass on them about how to get to that next level really helpful,” he said. “I wouldn’t be surprised if it’s our best turnout tonight.”

Callum Marquis, 15, said he was “pretty excited” to learn from Whiteman.

“I’m hoping to get some batting tips from him so I can play some new shots,” he said.

Jack McQuie, also 15, said it wasn’t often a player of Whiteman’s calibre visited Geraldton.

“I’m a wicket-keeper, so I really want to learn some new keeping tips,” he said.

Whiteman has been out of action since he broke his right index finger in last year’s KFC Big Bash League final, but he said he hoped to return around Christmas time.

“The healing process has been a bit of a nightmare — I’ve had three surgeries now and they haven’t worked, so hopefully the last one has worked, but only time will tell,” he said.

“To return to the Big Bash would be ideal, so I’ve got my fingers crossed.”

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