Congratulations to Malvern College’s Reehan Edavalath and Josh Baker on their selection for the Midlands Squad that competed at this year’s Bunbury Cricket Festival!
The Bunbury Festival brings 56 of the most talented Under15 schoolboy cricketers from England and Wales together to compete in 50-over and T20 matches and is widely known to feature the kind of talent from which England players of the future are made.
Both boys have reflected upon their experience:
“The Midlands squad selection process was lengthy, it began with indoor trials and finished with some matches outdoors. When I found out that I had been selected I was extremely happy and couldn’t wait to get going. A week before the festival we had a training session and a match to help us prepare.
Once we were underway my emotions were mixed; I felt both nervous and excited all the way to Millfield School, the hosts of this year’s festival. On day one, just after we had arrived, we collected our caps from former England batsman Marcus Trescothick which was very exciting. We then enjoyed the rest of the evening’s presentation, collected kit bags, as well as other items all provided for us by David English, the founder of the Bunbury Festival.
The facilities at Millfield School were outstanding, from the pitches to the practice nets and we enjoyed our cricket. At the end of our five matches, The Midlands finished runners-up in the 50 over competition narrowly losing on net run rate. But in the T20, we came 3rd - after a rain affected adjudication in the last match.
It was a great challenge to be playing against this group of gifted players. The week had presented us with much to learn - on and off the field, punctuality being key. I had my first experience of playing in front of the cameras with Sky Sports videoing the T20 Matches. Playing in front of selectors and many spectators was a nervous yet special experience, it felt like I had stepped up to another level. I feel really privileged to have competed in the Bunbury Festival this year and it has further increased my motivation to achieve my ambition to become a professional cricketer?
This year’s Bunbury festival was held at Millfield. There were four regions competing: The Midlands (my team) South and West, The North and London and East. This year’s caps were presented by Marcus Trescothick (former England and Somerset C.C.C. player).
On the Monday we played the South and West. We batted first and were 238 all out and in reply we bowled them all out for 221. My bowling figures were 2-43 off 10 overs. Next, we played London and East. We batted first and were 204 all out. They knocked them off easily reaching 205 off 41 overs. My bowling figures were 0-32 off 6 overs. Wednesday was the first of the T20 games, yet again we played London and East. We batted first and got 134 off 20 overs. In reply they knocked them off in 17 overs. I opened the bowling with figures of 2-12 off 4 overs. On Thursday we played The North and won by 113 runs. I was rested for this game. On the last day we played against The North in the 20 over competition. We bowled first and the North got 126 off their 20 overs. I once again opened the bowling with figures of 1-18 off 4. We won by 5 wickets on DLS.
In the end we finished 2nd in the 50-over competition and 3rd in the 20-over competition. It was great experience to test myself against the best players, of my age, in the country. It was also a good chance to make new friends. Some of the memories that I made over this week, will stay with me for a long time.