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Girls Aloud

Bowling tips, autographs, and promoting diversity

The day tries to promote the fact that cricket is a game that can be enjoyed by everybody, regardless of their gender, age or ethnicity

Cri-Zelda Brits

I took time out from preparations for the World Cup last week to go on a school visit to promote ICC Diversity Day, which is being celebrated on November 20 .
The day tries to promote the fact that cricket is a game that can be enjoyed by everybody, regardless of their gender, age or ethnicity. Along with Hashim Amla and AB de Villiers, we went to Montrose Primary School in Sandton, where we helped deliver coaching to boys and girls at the school.
It was great to see so many young people enjoying the game, especially girls, and I hope that we can continue encourage more and more females to play the game. There was lots of enthusiasm amongst the girls for playing the game and I was pleasantly surprised at the standard. Give it a few more years and I think I will have to be worried about my place in the team!
It was great to spend time with Hashim and AB and see what positive role models the top international players can be for young people. The reception that greeted them at the school was incredible and we certainly all signed our fair share of autographs – it was nice that the kids seemed keen to get my signature as well as the guys.
Hopefully we can use events like the next year to build the profile of the game, so our top South African women’s players can inspire more people to play the game.
There isn’t a huge amount of competitive cricket for us to play at the moment, so the main focus is just on working on our fitness.
We all to have to report on a daily basis what fitness work we have done to the squad and then we have fitness tests every fortnight. This is pretty intense and makes sure that nobody loses their focus in the build up to the selection of our squad.
We will then have a training camp in early December, before the final squad is chosen in early January.
I am also working hard to try and be in a position to start bowling for South Africa again, which I think will be an important additional asset if we are going to do well in 2009.
We know that there is a bit of work to do on our bowling and hopefully I will add some extra variety to the attack, although it will be strange starting to bowl on a regular basis again having not done this role for so long.
People ask me whether they think we can make it to the super six stage at the World Cup, but my answer is why can’t we go and win the tournament.
We know that will be extremely tough, but if we don’t aim for the top then we will never achieve number one position in the rankings. There is lots of hard work to do before then, but I think South African cricket has a bright future, particularly if our school visit last week is anything to go by.