Worcestershire CCC’s Academy was founded in 2000 and accredited by the ECB in 2003. The Academy is an integral part of Worcestershire CCC; the need to identify, select and develop the next generation of Worcestershire players is key to the continued development of this club.
Each year Damian D’Oliveira, Assistant Coach and Academy Director, selects players between the ages of 16–19 years for the programme. The programme runs from early November to mid-September encompassing the summer competition phase. The programme covers the following areas of development - technique, physical, nutrition, mental and performance lifestyle.
Technical development sees the young players participate in group and one to one sessions to improve their batting, bowling and fielding skills.
Physical preparation is achieved through personalised strength and conditioning programmes including fitness assessments, medical screening, physiotherapy and biomechanical analysis.
Nutrition advice and practical sessions are participated in by all Academy members. In the 2009 Academy induction the players planned, organised, prepared, cooked and served a three course meal for parents and guests. The meal went down a storm and players are continuously offered top quality nutrition advice.
Mental skills sessions undertaken with a sports psychologist prepare players for the future challenges of professional cricket.
The Personal Development and Welfare Programme provides academy cricketers with access to an ECB Personal Development and Welfare Coach who advises each individual on education, career and lifestyle support and guidance. Academy players are encouraged and supported to develop new life skills and to take responsibility for their long term personal development while still maintaining their focus on development of a career in cricket.
Damian is currently working intensively with assessors to provide an NVQ ‘Achieving Excellence in Sport Performance’ for all academy members to undertake. All the young cricketers are nurtured through the programme and gain a qualification at the end.
Worcestershire’s Academy has produced many talented cricketers who have become professional cricketers including Steve Davies, Daryl Mitchell, Richard Jones, Dave Wheeldon, Jack Manuel and Ben Cox.