By Ben aka Michael McIntyre

This was our first day of action on the second leg of our trip up in Francistown. We had travelled up on the Saturday from Gaborone and spent Sunday getting our strength back and preparing for what was promising to be a long week ahead!

The programme was set to differ a little bit from our first week as we would be working with the same group of teachers on Monday and Tuesday morning before assessing their work with local schoolchildren on the Tuesday afternoon, with the same sort of thing happening on Thursday and Friday. This enabled us to spend more time working with the teachers and going more into detail than the previous week. I had agreed with Adam, Mick and Clare that I would try and integrate an umpiring component into the coaching course as I had felt that this had maybe been missing in week one.

Our driver picked us up early and not so bright at 7.20am for a short drive to a local cricket ground. The first thing that struck me was the odd way in which this ground was equipped; there were some stone tables and benches as well as a rather lost looking shopping trolley!

Along with our local BCA contact Clement, we set to work. During the morning we had about 30 teachers in attendance, which was slightly higher than in week one.

As usual, Jono and the other coaches started the teachers off with a fun warm up to get the body and legs going, though I have to admit my body was none too pleased when I attempted to join in. Mick then took the teachers through the batting with 3 words (Rachel) drafting me in again to assist her in the batting scenario where I was once again the victim of an unbelievable run out!!

Mary Poppins (Adam) also did the basics of wicketkeeping, assisted more or less ably by yours truly. Rachel was in charge of the camera at this point and was caught apparently focusing extensively on the keepers buttock area during the demonstrations…

Jono did some bowling as well with the teachers and I rounded the morning off by doing a very quick ten minute crash course for the teachers on the role of the umpire, basic signals and a few of the ‘need to know’ laws such as what constituted a no ball and a wide. The last bit about a wide would surely have been of some interest to Jono, but unfortunately he was busy with another job at the time.

We then headed off for a quick lunch in town, before making for Satellite Primary School for an afternoon session with some of the teachers and approximately 120 local schoolchildren. A rather short, dusty but fun afternoon was had with us getting the children warmed up, going through some batting and bowling basics before a few short games to finish off the afternoon session.

After a quick stop at a local supermarket to stock up with essential supplies, we headed back to our Chalets for a debrief and to start planning the next few days. After going through a few of the day’s points, Mick, and Jono demonstrated some new games for us before we relaxed after a long hot day.