Sticks were swapped for bats on Wednesday night, as players and coaches from the NRG Fuel Nottingham Lions Academy celebrated the completion of the popular hockey skills and development school's first year, with a fun evening of cricket at the Barr Lane Community Sports Centre (formerly the Nottingham Community Sports Centre).

group

Coaches Matt Bradbury, Paul Glossop and Stuart Parker we're joined by Lions captain Luke Thomas assist the young hockey prospects in a training session, followed by a competitive mini-league to find out who would be crowned the 2014 NRG Fuel Lions Academy cricket champions.

Academy Head Coach Bradbury explained why they had opted for a change of scenery for his players; saying,

"We decided we would do something a little bit different to celebrate our first year, so we've come to the best indoor sports centre in Notts for a taste of a different sport and some pizza thanks to the nearby Domino's in Bulwell."

"We've had a really successful first twelve months and tonight gives all our youngsters to bond and have some fun in a different environment to what they are usually used to and learn some new skills in the process."

lukethomasLions captain Luke Thomas commanding the crease.

The academy youngsters were also given an expert helping hand on the night by Notts & Arnold Amateur Cricket Club's Youth Development Coach Andy Claye.

The academy's first year runs until the end of May and then breaks for a month, as many of the promising youngsters head to play for their respective national sides in the annual EIHA nationals tournament before the new coaching season begins in July.

Brad's Braves were crowned league champions on the night, finishing four points in-front of Stuey's Sledgers and eight ahead of Gloss's Goons.

coaches(L-R) Matt Bradbury, Paul Glossop and Andy Claye from Notts & Arnold Amateur Cricket Club.

More photos from the evening can be viewed by clicking here.

For more information about Barr Lane Community Sports Centre follow this link, whilst more details about the academy can be found by clicking here.

Sunday, 11 May 2014.