Coach Ingram Jones has been training children on cricket in Ikorodu, and on Sunday, parents of the children had a meet-up with him.
The recent meet-up which took place at the Ipakodo Grammar School had in attendance about 45 parents whose children attend the Majidun Grammer School and the Ipakodo Grammar School.
Jones expressed his joy over the presence of the parent while giving them a detailed history of how the project started.
“I asked my wife who is a Nigerian if they play Cricket in Ikorodu, she looked at me and said, cricket in Ikorodu? I told her I was going to bring cricket to Ikorodu. I live in Ikorodu, this is my home. So I was going to bring cricket to Ikorodu.”
He said that the parents should be rest assured about the discipline of their children as he does not tolerate indiscipline both on and off the pitch, asserting that such will translate itself in the lives of the children.
He said that cricket is a sport that adds value to the children, even education wise as it has the potential of having them get scholarships to universities.
He said, “Over the years, I have worked in schools. I also work as a mentor. I understand the importance of education. I also understand the importance of sports. And the two should work together. A child should use sports and its skills to do well in school. Never should a child use sports as an excuse not to do house chores, cleaning the house, helping out at home. In fact, they should have that discipline at home, in school and on the field. So discipline really matters. That’s why I am having this conversation with both parents and child.
“As a coach, I want the best for your child whether they are in school, whether they are on the pitch with me or at home. People who play the game understand that on the field, it is about discipline. There is no messing around when you are on the field because there’s a task that must be done.
I don’t expect that when you go home that you will be disrespectful to your parents. So as parents, I am asking you to come to me and let me know if they are disrespectful, if they are not doing what they should be doing at home, if they are turning up late at home after training. Let me know.
On the progress made so far, Jones said, “We have had training sessions at Ipakodo School and Majidun School. Our training is geared towards them being able to represent Lagos.
“Now to play for Lagos is a big thing. There are young kids at 12, 13, 17, 18, 20 who get scholarships to go study at UNILAG.”
“So this is not something that is a joke. The success of your children should not only be about money but them being able to get to the university. That is why I am here to let you know how important this sport is, what exactly this sport does as well.
Jones, however, assured the parents that the schools will give permission
to their children if a game falls during school hours, adding that for every trip to represent the state, the parents will be informed.
There was a question about equipment and who bears the purchase cost, Jones stated that for those who can afford the equipment, they should go ahead but for those who can’t, the Lagos State Cricket Association and the Nigeria Cricket Federation will provide the equipment.
After the meeting, parents expressed joy and gratitude to the coach for the initiative while promising to give him their full support.