How an Englishman funded a 2G Flicx Pitch to help grow the game in Uruguay

What motivated a man from Cheltenham to fund-raise for a cricket pitch to be sent 6812 miles across to Montevideo in Uruguay? Our business development manager Ashley Appleby finds out in the ninth episode of #AshAsh …

Rob’s wife was born in Montevideo, they have four sons and their best chance of playing international cricket was to represent Uruguay. In the past few months Rob has embarked on a unique fundraising project to raise funds for a 2G Flicx Pitch to be sent out to South America so that hard-ball cricket can be played with the aim of improving the standard of training and matches. In due course it could enable teams to tour Uruguay.

Cricket in Uruguay actually has a long and interesting history with Victoria Cricket Club established in 1842 by British ex pats. In 1868 the first game between Argentina and Uruguay took place whilst a touring side from the MCC visited in 1926 when the team included future English prime minister Alec Douglas-Home! A recent revival has taken place with John Biscomb setting up the Uruguay Cricket Association (UCA) in 2007 with president Hidhu setting up the UPL playing tape-ball cricket on La Rambla with the majority of players now having a South – East Asian origin. These players are taking the game forward and are committing huge amounts of time to establishing the game. Esteban McDermott the ceo of Cricket Argentina has also been a great help in enabling the Uruguayan players to develop.

Project 27 has so far gained 24 of 27 donors who have each pledged £100 towards the pitch (with help from a voucher too from Flicx UK) and the aim is for the pitch to be sent out to Uruguay in time for the 150th anniversary game between neighbours Argentina in December 2018.

” We did some initial research and tried to find what we thought was the best solution and the due diligence showed that the 2G Flicx Pitch was the best option and we are grateful for the support we have had with the project” said Rob

Clubs or charities looking to raise funds for facilities might like to look at Rob’s model, whilst crowdfunding websites could also be used if more time is available. If anyone is interested in supporting Cricket Uruguay and helping them complete their fundraising efforts, do contact Rob Sharp at rob_sharp100@hotmail.com

You can also follow Cricket Uruguay via Twitter https://twitter.com/CricketUruguay 

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HOW TO | Move your 2G Flicx Pitch easily with the Flicx Safety Trolley

The beauty of the upgraded 2G Flicx Pitch is its ease of movement and portability. It is possible for one person to move and install the 2G Flicx Pitch and prepare a consistent surface for cricket which is low maintenance and means you can play cricket where previously it might not have been possible for example on a grass football field or over a worn astro or synthetic pitch. Moving the 2G Flicx Pitch is easy with the Flicx Safety trolley … Here Ashley Appleby describes some of the bespoke features of the Flicx Safety trolley…

This video demonstrates how to strap your 2G Flicx Pitch (Supplied as 2 half pitch batting ends) onto the Flicx Safety Trolley for transportation …

Top Tip – Ash shares his advice in terms of finding the “balance point” to most easily move your 2G Flicx Pitch…

TRANSPORTATION RECAP 

  • Always use the Flicx Safety Trolley to move your 2G Flicx Pitch on and off the field
  • Using the trolley makes it possible for 1 person to move and install the 2G Flicx Pitch pitch
  • Strap the 2G Flicx Pitch up before moving
  • Ensure you follow manual handling best practice advice when lifting the pitch onto the trolley (ie – bend knees)
  • Watch your head when tilting the trolley back – place your hand on the top of the pitch when tilting

By following these steps you will get the best performance from your 2G Flicx Pitch season after season.

Tilt the pitch on the trolley to find the tipping point for ease of transportation. Use your hand to support the pitch

This is part of our HOW TO series of blogs and short videos … If you have found this useful you might also like …

HOW TO | Store your 2G Flicx Pitch (Read Blog)
HOW TO | Roll up your 2G Flicx Pitch correctly (Read Blog)

Applications of the 2G Flicx Pitch

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HOW TO | Store your 2G Flicx Pitch to ensure maximum performance and longvevity

Storing your 2G Flicx Pitch correctly will ensure maximum performance. The 2G Flicx Pitch should always be stored UPRIGHT and ON IT’S END and very tightly rolled. You should use the always use the Flicx Safety trolled supplied with the pitch to move it and you can keep it stored on the trolley for ease of transportation and when storing in your kit cupboard/storeroom/shed/groundsmans hut. Ashley Appleby explains more…

In this way the pitch will only take up 50 X 50cm in your storeroom (height of 1.8m) and when you roll it out again for your next match or training session, the pitch will not be wavy and will settle onto the under surface quickly (we recommend rolling your pitch out 30-45 minutes before use).

STORAGE RECAP 

  • Store inside when the pitch is not in use
  • Roll up tightly and strap
  • Store upright on its end (you can keep it on the Flicx safety trolley supplied)

By following these steps you will get the best performance from your 2G Flicx Pitch season after season.

A 2G Flicx Pitch arrives as 2 half pitch batting ends of ease of use. They just clip and zip together in the middle to form your full match pitch

This is part of our HOW TO series of blogs and short videos … If you have found this useful you might also like …

  • HOW TO | Move your 2G Flicx Pitch easily with the Flicx Safety Trolley (Read More)
  • HOW TO | Roll up your 2G Flicx Pitch correctly (Read Blog)

Applications of the 2G Flicx Pitch

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HOW TO | Roll up your 2G Flicx Pitch correctly

It’s highly important to roll your 2G Flicx Pitch back up tightly after use and store in a coil shape. Follow these top tips to get the maximum performance from your portable pitch. Unlike the original Flicx Pitch, the new 2G Flicx Pitch is softer and much easier to use. The upgrades to the surface have resulted in more versatility in terms of pitch applications but also advice that the 2G Flicx Pitch should be used as a roll out, roll up surface rather than permanently laid.

Here our business development manager Ashley Appleby, shows you how to roll back up your 2G Flicx Pitch correctly after use.

ROLL UP RECAP 

  • Unzip the full match pitch into two batting ends
  • Insert two straps under the pitch
  • Roll the pitch back up from crease to the middle
  • Roll as tightly as possible into a coil and keep square
  • Strap up and tie together for safety

By following these steps you will get the best performance from your 2G Flicx Pitch season after season.

Showing how a 2G Flicx Pitch 1/2 pitch roll looks like tightly rolled and strapped ahead of storing on its end

This is part of our HOW TO series of blogs and short videos … If you have found this useful you might also like …

HOW TO | Store your 2G Flicx Pitch (Read Blog)
HOW TO | Move your 2G Flicx Pitch easily with the Flicx Safety Trolley (Read More)

Applications of the 2G Flicx Pitch

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The 2G Flicx Pitch at the Lord’s Taverners #wicketz festival

Flicx UK were delighted to attend and support the #Wicketz festival hosted by Lord’s Taveners at Repton School last week. The festival was the biggest in the history of the Wicketz programme and saw over 120 young people from across the country took part in a three-day residential course consisting of competitive cricket, coaching masterclasses and vital life changing workshops

From the photo gallery below, you can see the fun that all the players are having on the finals day with the blue #wicketz pitches really looking vibrant and encouraging expansive shots to be played.

Lord’s Taveners has to date funded 2G Flicx Pitches for 5 #wicketz venues UK wide and project manager Dan Wilson explains how they have added value ” The 2G Flicx Pitches allow Wicketz to create more game spaces. We have divided each pitch into two batting ends and we have been playing soft ball cricket on the outfield here at Repton and the kids absolutely love it. The blue pitches been a great addition to our project as the towns and cities that we work in typically have limited green spaces so these portable pitches enable us to take cricket, in a more traditional format, into lots of different types of areas.

Using cricket as a tool for change is a key part of the Flicx UK’s history and values. Says Ashley Appleby, Business Development Manager at Flicx UK “Wicketz is a great project which we are very happy to support as it is aimed at hard-to-reach youngsters within areas of high deprivation across the UK and uses the power of cricket to improve lives, something which the original Flicx Pitch was created to do twenty years ago. We hope to see the project expanded next season so more Wicketz locations can access 2G Flicx Pitches and help create a better cricketing experience reaching as many people as possible”

For more information on the 2G Flicx Pitch range click here or to watch episode 6 of #AskAsh all about the Wicketz programme click here

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Transporting and Storing a 2G Flicx Pitch #AskAsh Episode 7

In order to get maximum performance and longevity from your 2G Flicx Pitch, follow these top tips from our business development manager Ashley Appleby on the best ways to move and store your pitch.

In terms of rolling the pitch up ahead of storage, the first thing is after the match is to unzip the pitch into two batting ends (Each half is one 10 meter strip) … make sure that you have got your safety straps on hand as it’s virtually impossible to move the pitch on and off the field if it hasn’t been strapped up.

Says Ash “What I like to do is insert the straps (the buckle) sort of one foot from the end of the pitch so that it’s already in position by the time I roll it over. So place them under the pitch at both sides about a foot in, put the straps into position and then roll the pitch up from the crease towards the middle . Now the reason why that’s important is that when you use the pitch at your next match it allows you to then line up the two half batting ends together in the middle, clip them together and then roll them out to form your full match pitch.”

Quarter tiles on the ends of a 2G Flicx Pitch allow you to get a nice tight roll. It’s important to roll the pitch so that its straight so that you can get longevity out of the pitch. We’ve found that pitches that are loosely rolled and that are left to lie-down lying on its side when they’re rolled out into the middle they tend to be quite wavy so it’s quite important to get a nice and sort of firm tight roll initially, first up and then to make sure that pitch is rolled up straight.

Wearing safety gloves, is really important, we advise that you always use safety gloves when working with the Flicx pitch. Ash continues “So what I like to do when rolling the pitch up is just crab to both sides of the pitch just to see that the pitch is being rolled up straight and then you roll it over the buckles that you’ve already put in place and tighten them with the ratchet. Nice and easy!!”

A visual demonstration of this process is available in Episode 7 of #AskAsh – watch it here then click here to catch up with all the previous episodes.

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The Wicketz Community Cricket Programme #AskAsh Episode 6

The latest episode of #AskAsh features our partnership with Lord’s Taverners with six of their Wicketz programmes now having access to a bespoke blue 2G Flicx Multi Aged Pitch (MAP) to help over come their facility challenges …

Wicketz is a community cricket programme targeting young people across the UK living in areas of deprivation and hard to reach groups. Our aim is to establish sustainable community hubs that provide year-round weekly sessions with a focus on developing crucial life skills and tackling issues that are prevalent to the local community.

Wicketz will tackle issues that negatively affect its participants and communities. Through sport, it will improve prospects of participants by developing their social and personal skills such as leadership, communication and self-esteem.

Said Henry Hazlewood, Head of Cricket Programmes “The long-term goal is to create a sustainable club environment focused on the wellbeing of its participants and local communities, and to leave a legacy beyond the funding cycle of the programme. Often in the areas of high deprivation that we are working, there is a distinct lack of green space. Wicketz needs this green space to try and establish a ‘home’ for Wicketz in the community. By providing 2G Flicx pitches to some of these communities it will enable us to build a thriving community hub that has long-term prospects. The Flicx pitches will enable us to do more and give the opportunity to more young people from these areas that need sporting provision the most.”

If your charity, County Board or organisation has a similar requirement, do get in touch with us – call 01295 816765 or request a quote for a multi-aged pitch click here.

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Coaching Cricket on the 2G Flicx Skills Pitch #AskAsh

Flicx UK’s business development manager Ashley Appleby teams up with Dan and Kieran from We Coach Cricket as they review the 2G Flicx Skills Pitch in the 4th episode of #AskAsh

With coloured coded coaching tiles, bowlers have a visual target for improved line and length consistency whereas batters can work on their decision making and correct shot selection. The 2G Flicx Skills Batting End is easy and quick to roll out and produces a consistent bounce and good pace when laid on a firm, flat surface (either indoors or outdoors).

You Tubers Kieran and Dan spent a day batting, bowling and keeping wicket on the world’s most versatile cricket pitch ( a 10m batting end) and will be releasing a series of coaching videos to demonstrate how coaches can use the wicket to improve their bowlers accuracy or batters shot selection with the use of visual cues.

“From my perspective bowling leg spin it’s really important to have something to train on that is realistic. The ball turned on the 2G Flicx Pitch just like it would on an outdoor wicket so that was fantastic”. Keiran at We Coach Cricket

“It played really naturally that was the most important thing for me. There was a bit in it for spinners, there was a bit in it for the seamers as well and it really was a nice natural bounce” A lot of the synthetic pitches ive played on in the past have always been quite dead and haven’t had much bounce; if you’ve been keeping, you’ve been taking balls by your ankles but the 2G Flicx Pitch really does have that spring in it you can feel it when you walk on it it’s got that kind of it’s got a little bit of give in it and it really makes a great  difference”. Dan at We Coach Cricket

For more information about the 2G Flicx Coaching Pitch designs and specifications click here 

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Preparing your ground for the new Cricket season #AskAsh Episode 3

As it’s currently pre-season for clubs and schools in the UK and northern hemisphere, this episode of #AskAsh covers what you need to do to prepare your ground ahead of laying a 2G Flicx Pitch …

The advice from Flicx UK Business Development Manager Ashley Appleby in this episode centres around the application of a 2G Flicx Pitch on grass. Particularly covering how to use it to add facilities to an existing ground for example, using the 2G Flicx Pitch as a second wicket to extend the cricket season (see Bute CCC case study for an example of a club in Scotland using our product as an all weather solution) and also when rolling out the 2G Flicx Pitch on the outfield for nets or to host multiple junior cricket matches. In terms of installing, the 2G Flicx Pitch is very quick and easy to use and if you follow the five pointers below you can achieve a realistic playing surface when laying it on grass…

1. IDENTIFY | Select a firm, flat area 22 x 2m on your grass field where you lay your 2G Flicx Pitch. Put on your gloves.
2. PREPARE | Cut the grass short in this area. Grass should be cut to 10-15mm with shorter grass giving you optimum performance Fill all diverts with a similar compact-able soil to the base surface and level off any high spots. Rolling is recommended for optimum
performance before each use.
3. PLACE | Position your two strapped pitch rolls in the middle of the strip. The 2G Flicx Match Pitch is rolled from the middle to the two opposite creases so place both rolls parallel to each other with the ends facing each other and remove the straps. Do not unroll the
pitch.
4. ROLL OUT | Make fine adjustments to align the connectors. This should be done when the two sections are still rolled up. Once all the connectors are correctly positioned, clip the two batting ends together. Roll the two batting ends out from the middle to the creases.
5. WAIT | Your 2G Flicx Pitch needs time to settle. We advise rolling out your 2G Flicx Pitch 30-45 minutes prior to each use. Failure to do this may result in low, uneven bounce at the start of play.

 

 

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Want to boost your junior participation?? Watch #AskAsh Episode 2

If your club or school is looking to create extra capacity to host more junior cricket (thus boosting participation) then take a watch of our second episode of #AskAsh …

Business Development Manager Ashley Appleby talks through our new 14 metre 2G Flicx Pitches (available in Blue, Green or Beige). These pitches can be rolled out onto the outfield to divide an oval into one, two, three or four junior pitches for matches or training thus taking traffic away from your first team square and exciting young players.

Smaller pitches and shorter boundaries mean more runs for batters and for bowlers they can now pitch the ball onto the wicket more easily thus these games see more action whilst increasing the skills of the players and generally creating a better experience, more likely to retain kids in the sport.

The only ground preparation would be to cut the grass short on the outfield, then roll the pitches out (2G Flicx Pitches can also be laid on other sub surfaces). This process is very quick and easy whilst the pitch will negate an imperfections in the under surface and provide good pace and bounce. Clubs can now tap into junior participation programs and develop these basic skills into small matches whilst local schools could be invited to participate in tournaments or cricket festivals which is a great way to attract more players to the clubs whilst also potentially increasing sponsorship and F+B income. As your number of sides increases, more pitches can be purchased to house these additional teams and because the 2G Flicx Pitch is so versatile, these same pitches could be used indoors for winter nets.

More information about these new 2G Flicx 14 metres pitches will follow very soon at www.flicx.co.uk or for instant information you can request a call back from Ash or contact him for prices ash@flicx.com 

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