HAILSHAM COMMUNITY College (HCC) celebrated the completion of its new non-turf match pitch with an official opening ceremony performed by Essex Captain and 27 times-capped England wicket-keeper James Foster.
The pitch was funded in part by a grant of £3,000 from The Lord Taverners Charity.
The celebration was made possible by Chartwells Caterers and Fosters Fridges who are suppliers for East Sussex Catering Services.
For 19 keen cricketers the day involved an interactive nutrition presentation, a healthy sit down meal with Foster, a street20 indoor cricket competition with Foster acting as umpire and passing on tips throughout and finally an outdoor session on the new match strip, during which Foster hit a huge 6 with a bat borrowed from a Year 9 player to the delight of all students.
Foster is generally regarded as one of the best wicketkeepers in the world, but is not normally noted for his batting, according to HCC.
Students were inspired by the former England man.
Adam Molloson, director of learning for PE, said: “Our students had a fantastic day, enjoying cooking during the nutrition session, but the highlight was undoubtedly the time they spent with James Foster playing cricket, he really left an impression throughout the school, but particularly on the young cricketers he worked with.
Year 8 student and keen cricketer Owen Miller added: “Meeting James Foster was a real pleasure and I really enjoyed the cricket session and it was really exciting listening to his cricketing adventures.
“I would love for James to come back and visit again”.
Foster himself was impressed with the talent in the group stating “there were some very talented young cricketers on show today and all the students were a pleasure to work with, showing an impressive understanding of nutritional requirements of sport as well as an array of cricketing skills.”
With a high quality pitch in place Hailsham Community College students are looking forward to being able to host home fixtures and maybe seeing the next James Foster emerge from the College.
Essex Captain and former England Wicketkeeper cuts the ribbon to officially open the new match pitch at Hailsham Community College watched by Acting Principal Phil Matthews and a group of keen cricketers.