GILCHRIST IS THE FATHER OF ADAM AND A CRICKET COACH IN NEW SOUTH WALES.
STAN WROTE RECENTLY OF HIS BOLA MACHINE...
have owned my BOLA machine for over twelve years now, and have used it
extensively for coaching both junior and senior players. I have conducted
four-day residential clinics four times each year over this time.
The BOLA has regularly worked for 6–7 hours every day, and has never
failed – not even a popped fuse!! I previously had a machine of
a different brand, and the BOLA has far outlasted and out-performed that
machine, both in durability and in flexibility.
Whilst our most notable “graduate” from our clinics has been
Adam Gilchrist, we can boast several first-class and state players. On
the occasions when he was at home during his formative years Adam used
the BOLA machine extensively for developing that cover drive and square
cut that has hurt so many bowlers over the years. He wasn’t allowed
to practice his lofted on-drives though - because we do have neighbours!
training at Millfield School has acquired a completely new look this winter
and pupils have found themselves batting inside a bubble!
Three of Millfield’s outdoor nets have been covered with a polythene
dome that is supported only by air. “We have indoor nets in the
sports hall but we always have to compete with other sports to book the
sports hall so the ‘bubble’ provides superb, extra, all-weather
capacity through the winter,” said Cricket Coach and ex-Somerset
CCC all-rounder Mark Davis. “We intend to have the ‘bubble’
erected between October and April each year and I have one of the school’s
BOLA Machines with a Stand permanently inside,” said Mark.
The air dome is supplied by Covair Structures and is held in position
by a net. Having no permenant supports allows it to be easily deflated
and inflated. The school’s own staff can carry out the majority
of the maintenance work, which helps to keep costs down.The
dome is kept inflated by air from a continuously running electric fan.
membrane fabric is 90% transparent so that existing outdoor lighting can
be used. Access is through a self supporting revolving door which minimises
air escape and helps to maintain the internal positive pressure.
“Domes like these will allow cricket clubs around the country to
get much more use out of their investment in outdoor nets,” said
Mark, “and that will apply to their BOLA Machines as well!”
A dome with a ten year life span and covering three nets with medium sized
run ups costs £25,000 which is only a fraction of the cost of a
purpose built indoor school.
“We have 100 domes in use in the UK for various applications,”
said Helen Wright of Covair, “but the Millfield one is the first
to be used exclusively for cricket.”