We are proud to supply kit to the widest possible range of sports clubs. Women’s sport, men’s sport, kids’ sport, bowls, netball, hockey, cricket, archery, football, athletics… you name it, we do it. One club with whom we are particularly proud to be associated is Derbyshire Owls, a visually impaired cricket club.
DERBYSHIRE OWLS – UNBEATEN CHAMPIONS!
The Derbyshire Owls – the only visually impaired sports club in the county – were formed in the summer of 2010, and became independent in 2015. The team has featured players aged from 18 to, quite remarkably, 83 and is comprised of both male and female players. The Owls currently play in the North and East division of the Development League, winning the league last season and finishing unbeaten against rivals such as Durham, Yorkshire and Nottinghamshire.
The team’s coach, Alan Gardner, is rightly proud of their achievements and is keen to see his charges make waves at international level.
Young Georgie Ridgway is part of the England Ladies’ Squad, who compete regularly and will be travelling to the West Indies next year. Nadeem Khan, our captain, and Abbas Zaib – both totally blind – have been training with the England squad. We’re very proud of them. Alan gardner, derbyshire owls coach
So how does VI cricket work? Alan explained:
The major difference between red ball cricket and VI cricket is the ball. We use a size 3 football with bearings inside so it can be heard. Balls bowled to totally blind players must bounce twice before reaching the batting crease. If a ball bounces only once and is caught by ‘a Total’ (totally blind), then the batsman is out. There is a procedure when bowling – the bowler must call “batsman ready”, wait for a response, then call “play” as the ball leaves his or her hand. Failure to follow this procedure results in “No Ball” being called.
Other rules include:
- Wickets are larger so batsman and bowlers can touch them to orientate themselves
- For partially sighted batsman, the ball must bounce at least once before reaching the crease
- A totally blind batsman is given one chance before being given out for LBW
- A batsman who is totally blind cannot be stumped
- A totally blind batsman receives double runs
The club, along with all other VI teams around the country, has been awarded a grant by The Primary Club, alongside donations from local charity organisations – which have relieved some of the financial strain. The Owls’ squad is, however, small, and Alan is desperate to increase their membership to relieve the strain on a group of players who often have to make sacrifices such as forgoing personal plans simply to ensure the team has the numbers to fulfil a fixture.
We recently dispatched their new kit, and while Alan is delighted with it it appears he is about to set us a new task:
Our new KUDOS kit is fantastic, and just what we needed. I have a new player who needs a shirt, and so I will have to contact KUDOS again – as he will need an XXXXXL size. That could be a challenge!
It’s a challenge we are up to meeting and we’re delighted to continue our association with the club. We’d like to thank Alan for his contribution and to wish him and the club all the best for the rest of the season and beyond.
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KUDOS custom teamwear is designed to suit your cricket club’s needs and comes in matching styles – including personalised cricket polo shirts, cricket trousers, tracksuits and more.