Kicking off in Joburg on 30 August 2009, the popular Fathers and Sons Cricket Series will see hundreds of youngsters participating in coaching clinics with some of the Protea stars.
Toyota South Africa became the official vehicle supplier to Cricket SA and the Proteas at the beginning of 2007, re-entering the cricket arena after a four-year absence. The Fathers and Sons initiative is one of the ways in which Toyota decided to leverage its vehicle sponsorship.
“Toyota is a caring brand focused strongly on family values, whilst cricket is a sport in which the whole family can enjoy. We believe that cricket can assist our brand in speaking to and forming lasting relationships with our target market,” says Andrew Kirby, Toyota SA Senior Vice President for Sales and Marketing. “The Fathers and Sons initiative is a perfect fit for our brand values, and based on the success of the inaugural tri-series held in 2008, we're hoping that the 2009 events will be equally well supported.”
The 2008 series' turnout was overwhelming, with over 1000 people - fathers, mothers and sons - arriving at the ground and joining in the festivities, which included a live performance by Heinz Winkler, face-painting and clown entertainment. All three coaching clinics were a hugely successful, with the children clutching to their heroes at every available opportunity. The cricket celebrities included the likes of Shaun Pollock, Paul Harris, Alan Dawson, Rory Kleinveldt, Ryan Canning and Richard Levi. Other celebs included the Morkel brothers, Neil McKenzie and a whole host of Dolphins players at the Durban event held one week after Cape Town.
This year is bound to see the event become even bigger and better, and so we would like to urge all the eager young fans to enter early, as no doubt the entries will fill up soon. The first of this years events will take place at Supersport Park Centurion on 30 August, with the second event one week later at Sahara Oval, Kingsmead Stadium on 6 September. The last of the 2009 series will take place in Cape Town on 13 September at Sahara Newlands Stadium.
The events will follow much the same format as last year with children divided into groups and coached in the areas of batting, bowling and fitness and fielding. The fourth session of the day will be a motivational talk by Shaun Pollock and some of the Proteas who will provide tips for both children and parents. Mothers are welcome to a treatment of pampering and relaxation courtesy of various spa treatments and there are fun activities arranged for children under six years old.
Protea players who will be joining in the coaching festivities include Morne Morkel and AB de Villiers at Centurion; Paul Harris and Yusuf Abdullah at Kingsmead and Dale Steyn and JP Duminy at Newlands. Shaun Pollock and Paul Harris will be present at all three events.
In support of the event Gerald Majola, CSA CEO, said: "Cricket South Africa's heritage is based on the inherent values of loyalty and the pursuit of excellence being passed on from generation to generation within the family of our nation. CSA is very proud of these values, and we are privileged to share them with the world-class Toyota brand. We urge all families to come on this wonderful adventure with CSA and Toyota."
Toyota's official ambassador, Shaun Pollock concludes with his thoughts on last year's events: “The events were filled with fun and enjoyment from all involved. Coaching and interacting with the children was an awesome experience, and to be able to share my skills and experience with them is something that I place great importance on. Who knows, we might just identify South Africa's next fast bowler amongst all these boys! I think that this is a great initiative by Toyota, and would like to thank both Toyota and Let's Play for supporting the game that so many people love, so much.”
The Fathers and Sons Cricket events will be taking place on these following dates:
- 30 August: Johannesburg at Supersport Park, Centurion
- 6 September: Durban at Sahara Oval Kingsmead Stadium
- 13 September: Cape Town at Sahara Park Newlands Stadium
Tickets are only R90 each and can be purchased on the Toyota website (www.toyota.co.za). Pre-registration is essential and no tickets will be sold at the events. You will receive confirmation via email once you have paid.