IT took only one session from Australian fast bowling coach Craig McDermott for young Tamworth all rounder Lucas Constable and Armidale quick Dominic Pilon to notice a difference in their game.
The former Australian Test and one-day star and current national fast bowling coach was in Armidale conducting a cricketing masterclass camp for junior players at TAS.
TAS first XI and Armidale U16 quick Pilon was soaking up as much information as he could get from McDermott.
“When I heard he was coming I couldn’t believe it,” Pilon said.
“After what he has done with the Ashes side... it is amazing to have him here.”
McDermott is a very technical coach and is also known for his personable character and approach.
“He has shown me a lot of technical issues with my action and my body,” Pilon said.
“He taught me to use my whole body rather than just my arm to get power and speed.”
“I could feel and see the difference with my line and length after one hour with him in the nets.”
McDermott’s masterclass focused on getting the basics right and he told the boys the same principles of bowling apply for Mitchell Johnson as they do to them.
Pilon is hoping to use the new skills to help TAS carry on their form in the GPS competition this season.
“We have won four games already and some very decisively,” Pilon said.
The opening bowler has a very busy schedule, this year playing for TAS 1sts, 3rds, and U16s, and is also looking to make some rep sides this season.
All of that has to happen in between rehearsals for Westside, the school musical that he has a major role in.
North Tamworth U14 player Constable was also seeing the benefits of the McDermott touch immediately.
“The camp has been great and I have improved everything,” Constable said.
“He told me to keep my wrist up straight and I am already bowling better.”
Constable was also getting some batting tips from coach and former state player Mathew Mott.
“The coaches are great and hopefully I can take this back to Norths,” Constable said.
“It is awesome to have Craig (McDermott) here.”
McDermott will be back in Armidale in October to conduct another camp at TAS.
“The facilities here are perfect and it is important to bring elite level coaches to country areas,” McDermott said.