Cricket Tour to South Africa
The College’s first truly co-educational tour is underway with 28 talented boys and girls spending their half-term representing Marlborough in South Africa.
Tour captains Ben Spink (SU U6) and Rosie Pembroke (EL U6) are leading Marlborough to one of the world’s leading cricketing nations, and they offered their thoughts on the trip before setting off.
How do you see your role as captain on tour?
Ben: Over the last couple of years we have had quite a young team, but a number of youngsters have come through. I have had two years in the XI and I am hoping to lead from the front now as captain. I am lucky enough to have had two excellent captains previously – Dom Coulson was a very good leader and an excellent batsman and Will Cook, captain last year, was also in Summerfield and gave me a lot of advice regarding tactics and leadership skills. They’ve both helped point me in the right direction ahead of the new season.
Rosie: We have had a young team with a mix of players from the Remove to the Upper Sixth, so it’s about helping to bond that team together and offering advice where I can. We have had some real highlights over the past few seasons and hopefully we have more of those experiences to come for the younger players. Girls’ cricket is growing fast and the girls here are keen to get on tour.
What can the tour party expect from South Africa?
Ben: The whole squad are hugely excited about the trip and from a personal point of view this will be my first time over there. We have had plenty of training sessions building up to the tour and there are many family members from across the tour party coming out to support too. The weather should be a bonus as well!
Rosie: I actually lived in South Africa for about seven years when I was growing up, so I know a little bit about life out there. Girls’ cricket, like in England, is fairly new in South Africa and it’s a growing sport. I am sure there will be some very competitive matches and we’ll also have some opportunities to support the boys’ matches.
When you think of cricket at Marlborough, how do you reflect on your experiences so far?
Ben: I have learned a huge amount during my time playing cricket at Marlborough. My first year in the XI was a bit of a learning curve whilst last season was pretty good in terms of results. The coaching we have received has been excellent, and Mr Alleyne has passed on his insight of playing on the pitches out in South Africa; he speaks so well and helps to gel the team together.
Rosie: At Marlborough everyone knows how to make it fun as well as competitive. It has been a really enjoyable experience and we’ve had some real highs in terms of team performances and memorable moments, such as the Prize Day matches.