Southland Cricket Association general manager IAN MOCKFORD provides another update from Southland's tour of India.
Our team got the opportunity to train at Dilshad Gardens after one of our games was rained off.
Dilshad Gardens is a community sporting facility that includes badminton, tennis and basketball courts and the cricket ground.
The set-up is first rate with a lot of care and attention going into the facilities. Being able to play and train here was a pleasure for the group.
The training was useful for the boys who have a lot of information running around in their heads and it was ideal to be able to try some techniques and tactics out on the training ground.
Using this time to come up with plans for the matches was invaluable.
On Sunday we travelled to see the Trinidad and Tobago-Mumbai Indians Champions League game at the Feroz Shah Kotla Stadium in New Delhi. With a massive crowd the experience was great.
My highlight was the respect that the crowd gave Sachin Tendulkar, no matter where he went the crowd screamed in support. This fanatical support is not something we see in New Zealand.
In our fourth game of the tour we played the East Delhi Academy at Dilshad Gardens. In incredibly humid conditions the boys played well against a mixed aged team. No matter where you were and what we were doing today, you were covered in sweat.
Brendan Rodden and I were taught many lessons in the nets by the junior academy boys and people along to watch the match. The Indian people live, eat and breath cricket and to meet and connect with the kids was special. They are very respectful and appreciative of any time given to them.
The team bowled reasonably well with Bailey Andrews getting 3 wickets for 50 runs off 7 overs and Ashleigh Harrison picking up 2 for 7 off 6 overs. As a leg spinner Ashleigh has struggled to land the ball in the matches to date, but he came out with a positive mindset and his bowling was outstanding in these conditions. He can now take away the message that he can compete at this level and in these conditions.
With the East Delhi Cricket Academy making 184 off their 35 overs, our boys batted as a unit to get our first win on tour. James Ng, 15, Tyler Haslemore, 19, Jared Simpson, 16, Bailey Andrews-Kennedy, 11, Sam Rodden, 13, and Ashleigh Harrison, 11, showed that the boys are getting starts and now need to kick on.
Sauraj S, Sauraj D and Raju brought the game home for us when we needed some consistency at the end of the game. The match showed that the boys are learning and that we are making progress which is really pleasing.
The next assignment for the the group is to head south to Agra to see the Taj Mahal.
The eight-hour return trip will be difficult, but the opportunity to see one of the seven wonders of the world doesn't come up that often. The group will enjoy seeing how Indian life unfolds in front of us as we travel the country.
- © Fairfax NZ News