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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And the “Flicx Pitch Pitch” winners are …

Excuse the pun but we have been well and truly bowled over by all the entries in our “Flicx Pitch Pitch” competition and it was a very difficult task for our MD Richard Beghin to pick a winner but we have the result…

Congratulations Iceland Cricket! Here is their winning entry

‘Audun hit the ball over Grettir’s head. He could not catch it, and it bounced away over the ice. Grettir bowled the next ball so that it hit Audun in the face. Audun lashed out and hit Grettir with the bat, then kneed him in the groin.’ – Grettir’s saga. Cricket was invented by the Vikings in the ninth century, and it was a violent game to say the least. The pitches were uneven and so were the matches; there were many serious injuries. Had the Vikings installed a Flicx pitch, the path of history could have been very different. The ‘Game of Thrones’ could have been ‘Game of 50 overs per side with a Break Between Innings for Tea’. It is sad to say that although ‘krikket’ still flourishes in Iceland today, the pitches are as uneven and unpredictable as they were a thousand years ago. No longer are the burly Vikings in the firing line, but the brave and sports-loving children of Reykjavík. The ball bounces like crazy on our artificial football pitches, and if only we had a proper cricket pitch then we could at last enjoy our cricket in a safe and happy way.

Immigration has such a positive influence on Iceland. Refugees and economic migrants, Muslims and Hindus, Brits and Barbadians have breathed life into Arctic cricket. With sponsors and fundraising, we have launched programmes bringing cricket to schools and refugee centres, but we need to be sure that the children are safe. The Icelandic word for safety is ‘öryggi’ and ‘gaman’ means fun, but cricket can teach the Icelanders a new word – a word from the special language of cricket. All cricket-lovers know this language, and they know that ‘Flicx’ means safety and ‘Flicx’ means fun. Let’s bring Flicx to the volcanic rock of Iceland!

We were impressed by the passion for cricket shown in so many of the submissions from clubs looking to gain extra capacity for their junior sections, to schools looking to introduce formal cricket for the first time right up to national cricket associations looking to integrate refugee communities through cricket. There is no doubt that the 2G Flicx Pitch can play such a vital role in boosting participation and increasing the standard of matches and we hope to continue to work with all the clubs and schools that entered to develop their facilities in the coming months and years.

Speaking about the winning entry Richard Beghin commented ” Flicx has always been about developing cricket and the entry from Iceland really showed passion for developing the game and a structure where their new 2G Flicx Pitch will have a huge impact in the country by creating a portable facility for young players to develop and will host senior cricket matches. We are already seeing Iceland make a huge impression at the World Cup – maybe one day we will see them at Lords or some of their players in the IPL!”

For more information about the 2G Flicx Pitch range, visit our website or watch #AskAsh our monthly vlog for top tips on using the world’ most versatile cricket pitch! WATCH #AskAsh

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What is the cost of shipping a 2G Flicx Pitch to the USA??

To all cricket clubs, colleges and academies in the USA, we have some good news which makes purchasing a 2G Flicx Pitch even more cost effective than previous seasons. Flicx UK are offering £300 towards the shipping of a full match pitch and £150 towards the shipping of any batting end. Typical quotes are £520-£535 for a match pitch so the customer contribution is typically only £220 approximately.

The 2G Flicx Pitch is a game changer for cricket participation in the States. We have fantastic case studies from clubs and colleges that have used our portable, versatile pitch to play cricket matches either by rolling it out onto a synthetic surface, baseball square or using public grass fields thus solving their facility problem, when it’s not possible to curate a turf wicket.

Existing satisfied customers include

  • Cricket Council USA
  • Long Island Youth Cricket Academy in NY
  • Harvard University – READ CASE STUDY
  • Tallahassee University
  • San Diego Cricket Association – READ CASE STUDY
  • Northwest Cricket League, Washington State & Twelves Cricket Club, Washington State
  • Cricmax Academy, New Jersey
  • Novel Sports on Trinidad and Tobago – READ CASE STUDY 

How is the 2G Flicx Pitch used in the States?

The 2G Flicx Pitch is a portable, roll out – roll up solution so it ticks the boxes for those looking to play in parks or open spaces as the pitch can be rolled out just before the game and there is no damage to the under surface. Cricket academies have seen huge benefit in using batting ends to develop their talent whilst the pitch is also commonly laid on concrete or synthetic turf fields to convert them into cricketing venues.

Players and clubs always point to the increase in the match quality with the 2G Flicx Pitch. It provides a grippy surface where the ball comes onto the bat nicely, favouring neither the batters or bowlers.

“We take immense pride in providing the Beehive State with a pitch which enhances the scope of cricket in Utah to the next level. Our new pitch allows an even playing field for the batsman and bowlers, helps the youngsters develop their skills as well as provides a set-up for adults to hone their skills. We truly believe that the 2G Flicx is to play a catalyst for us as a club to reach one of our true goals and that is to create opportunities for more people to enjoy the global game!!” – Utah Lions

“We chose the 2G Flicx Pitch because it’s a portable solution and means Novel Sports can set up a cricket experience centre at various locations for all to enjoy. We have already found that kids are very motivated to play on artificial surfaces such as the Flicx Pitch as it offers a good bounce and spin” – Novel Sports (Trinidad)

Interest is at a record high in the states as Flicx are able to offer more competitive shipping rates than previously. View our range of 2G Flicx Pitches or Click Here to get a quote of your club or school including US shipping charges

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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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The growth of cricket in Spain | Torrevieja Cricket Case Study

Torrevieja Cricket Club is located in Spain’s south-eastern Alicante province, on the Costa Blanca and the club has recently acquired a Flicx Pitch which has provided a much more consistent playing surface for their matches and training.

Cricket in Spain is growing in popularity with ex-pats from all cricketing countries participating with a few natives sprinkled here and there, with Torrevieja participating in the East and Central cricket league which pits them against sides including Madrid CC, Valencia, La Manga, two teams from Alicante and Sporting L ’Alfas in 40 over and T20 matches. Facilities are varied from the high-quality provision at La Manga CC to clubs playing on coconut matting where the bounce isn’t consistent and there is no way of repairing any wear and tear on the surface. This was the case at Torrevieja who were very keen to investigate better alternatives which would make for higher quality matches.

After Madrid CC purchased a new 2G Flicx Pitch, enquiries were made by Torrevieja about using their old original Flicx Pitch and soon the roll out solution was being shipped to Torre’s ground which is a council owned “multi use” athletics track.

As you might expect with a grass surface of this nature and with its athletics applications, it can be fairly undulated especially in areas of high javelin and shot-put traffic, so the fact the Flicx pitch is firm and flat means that it mitigates these areas of unevenness. The pitch is rolled out and back up after each game and the grass is cut short at the venue following the purchase of a petrol- driven lawnmower by the club to supplement the council’s best efforts.

The quality of the matches since the acquisition of the Flicx Pitch is much higher so explains chairman Graham Shelton “We are really happy with the Flicx Pitch; the bounce is much more consistent than we were achieving previously and its quicker and more convenient to lay the pitch. With the modular tile layout, it has the added advantage of being able to easily replace any damaged tile quickly and cost effectively. We pretty much play all year round apart from when it’s raining when the pitch can become slippery and have already spoken to colleagues at other clubs around Spain where the Flicx Pitch would also be suitable and like us are ready to take cricket in the region to the next level”

 

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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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Flicx Pitch fix for the San Diego Cricket Association

With great weather and year-round fixtures, what’s not to love about cricket in San Diego, California but growing their membership over the past decade up to 22 teams and 500 players hasn’t been without significant challenges.

The San Diego Cricket Association (SDCA) hosts matches adult (with some youth players) T20 matches in 6 or 7 public parks across the city and recently purchased two 2G Flicx Pitches which were re-configured to create 5 batting ends (2.6m x 10m in size). The 2G Flicx Pitch has solved a couple of the key facility problems facing the SDCA…

  1. As the public parks are used for other sports like soccer and American football, the grass generally contains minor bumps and undulations. Using the 2G Flicx Pitch MITIGATES SURFACE IMPERFECTIONS and as a result the quality of cricket has increased, and the games are more competitive.
  2. Compared to using Jute matting (formerly used by the SDCA), the 2G Flicx Pitch is a much FIRMER, HARDER SURFACE, so the ball comes onto the bat nicely and the pitch doesn’t need replacing every season, which makes it very cost effective. Batsmen no longer face the peril and unpredictability of either low bouncing balls or balls around the head as the wicket is consistent and realistic.
  3. The SDCA has strengthened relationships with the city authorities as by using the 2G Flicx Pitch there is REDUCED WEAR AND TEAR ON THE GRASS UNDER SURFACE in the park so minimal maintenance costs because of hosting cricket in these public areas.
  4. EASE OF INSTALLATION AND STORAGE. The SDCA found the Flicx Pitch easy to install – in fact they took the versatility of the product one step further and purchased the component parts and built their own bespoke batting end sizes to suit player requests for a wider wicket.

Player feedback has also been very positive as SDCA president Aditya Sehgal explains. “Batsmen like playing on the 2G Flicx Pitch wickets as they produce even bounce and good pace which has increased the level of competitiveness in our matches and the ball comes onto the bat nicely so shots like drives can be executed in confidence. We are very satisfied with how the 2G Flicx Pitches are working for us”. With the huge number of leagues now operating in California Aditya is sure colleagues from other leagues can benefit hugely with the introduction of the Flicx Pitch in their locations.

So, what’s next for cricket in California? With the creation of Cricket USA, Aditya would like to see more support filtering down to help grow the game locally and would welcome help convincing city authorities of the value of the sport and resources to develop more junior players. In addition, help creating, and funding suitable facilities will be vital whilst the other part of the puzzle would be more support for top players looking to take their skills to the international arena where players still are self-funded. Perhaps one day we will see a SDCA player in the Big Bash or IPL?? certainly with the passion for cricket displayed by Aditya and his colleagues, anything is possible. You can follow the SDCA at http://sandiegocricket.com/

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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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