As we reach the end of the 2024 academic year and cricket season, we take some time to reflect on crickets progress at the University of Worcester with Craig Williams (Course Leader for the Integrated Masters in Cricket Coaching & Management), Dan Such (Lecturer on the Integrated Masters in Cricket Coaching and University of Worcester Cricket Coach), and Alfie Marston (University of Worcester Head Coach for the men’s and women’s performance programmes & Worcestershire women’s coach).


Cricket on the up at the University of Worcester! What a fantastic year!

Both in the classroom and on the field, it has been a successful year for cricket at the University. Craig stated, ‘we have 42 students across the first two cohorts of the Integrated master’s degree and the second years are currently putting the foundations in place for their upcoming coaching placements”. He further underlined how the applied experiences are integral to the course and how pleased he was to see such a range of placements within the programme. When discussing the international opportunities aligned to the coaching and management placement modules, Craig said “we have a number of students taking the opportunity to undertake placements overseas, with students travelling to North America, Sri Lanka and Australia, to develop their cricket knowledge”. As well as the international opportunities, Craig said “we also have students on placement within the UK at organisations such as Worcestershire County Cricket Club (WCCC) and the Worcestershire Cricket Foundation, where they are currently engaging in pathway coaching, performance analysis and community development projects”.

To further support the students external understanding of cricket funding, development, and management, the second-year cohort have recently completed a sponsorship and fundraising module. The module concluded with the students applying their skills and knowledge to develop a series of cricket related crowd funding bids.  

Cricket coach cpd day
Group of coaches who attended the Worcestershire Cricket Foundation CPD day


Alongside their studies, students have engaged well in their coaching CPD. Dan said that “the University were grateful for the support of the Worcestershire Cricket Foundation, who secured funding for students to complete the core coach coaching qualification earlier in the year”. This meant all students on the Integrated Masters were core coach (level 2) qualified by the end of the academic year. Alongside formal coach education, Dan said “we were delighted to once again work with the Worcestershire Cricket Foundation to host the counties annual coach’s association education day”. An event that brings University cricket coaches and coaches from across the county together to work with guest coaches on aspects of the game. The day was led by Elliot Wilson (senior academy coach at WCCC) and Richard Jones (WCCC Bowling Coach).

On the field, head coach Alfie said, “the program has gone from strength to strength”. The men’s first team have secured back-to-back promotions with successive league titles in the outdoor game, as well as a second place in the National indoor competition. The women’s first team won their BUCS outdoor league and narrowly missed out on promotion to the Southern Premiership, following a play-off final defeat in Bristol. On the indoor front, the women’s team played a wonderful campaign to finish third in the National indoor competition.  

Immy Hill County Cap from Alfie 1
Imogen Hill receiving her county cap from Alfie Marston

As well as the University team success, Alfie was delighted to see players from the University having success in other playing environments. Libby Thomas continues to perform well for the Central Sparks Academy and joined the Central Sparks first team squad for their pre-season tour to India. Earlier in the year, Libby also represented the NCCA England’s Women Squad in the inaugural women’s European Championships. Lily Wood, Aimee Denton, Emily Kibble, and Imogen Hill were selected in Worcestershire’s Women’s squad and Lily and Emily have represented the County this summer.  Felix Haines and Oliver Halion have played in the Herefordshire National Counties team and Alex Gosling has played for Essex’s second eleven.  Alfie expressed his thanks to the Universities performance sport lead Charlotte Beaman-Evans and her team for the support that they have provided to our cricket scholars and performance squads this year. He also said that the University had received excellent support from both Ombersley Cricket Club and Colwall Cricket Club, who despite all the rain had prepared some excellent pitches for our home games this season.  


The year and our season concluded with the cricketers at the University supporting the Ruth Strauss Foundation. Dan said, “the students have a good sense of community engagement”, and “as a collective they worked extremely hard to facilitate an event for the foundation at Colwall CC”. The student’s efforts led to over £1000 being raised for the charity.  A wonderful effort by all involved.

Craig concluded by saying “how positive the year had been for all things cricket at the University and with the development of the new International Inclusive Cricket centre getting ever closer, the potential for further growth is hugely exciting”. 

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