Kittitian cricketer Akheam Fox joins Marylebone Cricket Club in England
|Akheam (centre) with his parents, Mrs Lynette and Mr David Fox.|
Basseterre St. Kitts (January24, 2012) — Charismatic St. Kitts National Cricket team right-handed batsman 20-year-old Akheam Fox has joined the Oxford Brookes University and is a member of its prestigious Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC) Universities Cricketing Centre of Excellence. He left the Federation on Tuesday January 17 out of the Robert L. Bradshaw Airport aboard a London Gatwick-bound British Airways flight.
A holder of 9 CXC subjects, 8 CAPE units, and an associate degree from the Clarence Fitzroy Bryant College (CFBC) in Basseterre, Akheam Fox, will be pursuing a bachelor’s degree in Information Technology for Business Management. He revealed that apart from his class-work, where he aspires for the highest, he will come out of England a better cricketer.
“I did as much research as possible on the school I am going to attend,” said Fox in relation to Oxford Brookes. “Their players are a pretty professional unit who look to be well organised because it is designed to turn you into a professional. I am expecting a lot of hard training as I am determined to meet their standard. I am also expecting challenges of having to improve myself in order to maintain my place in the team since my goal is to become a professional cricketer.”
He had his first session with the Oxford University Cricket team on Monday January 23, and made an impressive start to the comments of “here comes another flashy West Indian.” Talking to his mother, Lynette Fox, on phone that evening, he said that he had been allotted a locker at the Oxford University meaning that he won’t be carrying his kit whenever he goes to play.
A product of the Keith Arthurton Cricket Academy in Basseterre where he joined at age nine, his cricketing potential was immediately spotted and nurtured by former West Indies batsman, Nevisian Keith Arthurton, who believes that as a cricket player, Akheam Fox has one of the best temperaments.
“He definitely has got the potential,” said Keith Arthurton. “What I like about him the most is the temperament that he has, because a lot of us have the talent but because we do not have the mental attributes and the know how to put it together, we tend to fail along the way.”
Arthurton said that for Akheam to go to England and play he will get an opportunity to rub shoulders among very good coaches. The country will offer him training technology that is going to make his game improve a whole lot. He said that Akheam will get high level practices that will be executed in a game situation. According to Arthurton, this has been a limiting factor in St. Kitts where players only get net practice sessions but very few practice matches.
“Wherever he goes to further his education, he wanted to make cricket a part of what he is doing because he knows it in himself that he has got whatever it takes to get to the top,” remarked Arthurton who hosted a farewell dinner for Akheam on the night of Friday January 13 at his home in Bladens Development.
|A video grab of Akheam net-practising at Oxford University on Monday January 23.|
Akheam Fox has played for the St. Kitts Under 13, St. Kitts Under 15, St. Kitts Under 17, St. Kitts Under 19, the Leeward Islands Under 19, and he is presently a member of the St. Kitts national Cricket Team.
At age 18 Akheam was named Youth Cricketer of the year 2010 by the Ministry of Sports after he came off a most impressive Giant Malt High Schools and College competition where he topped the batting aggregate scoring 275 runs in 5 innings at an average of 55. His consistency produced scores of 42, 61, 66, 66 &40. His best score to date was 100 not out. His only ton so far, came in a match against the visiting Dunnington County Team from England, at the Conaree Cricket Ground, St. Kitts.
In February 2011 Akheam was selected to represent St. Kitts at an ICC High Performance Training Camp held at the Warner Park St. Kitts. He explained that his participation here was a rewarding experience.
But what inspired Akheam’s father, David Fox, about his son’s performance was that in early 2007 the ICC sent Anderson Montgomery Roberts (former West Indies fast bowler best known as Andy Roberts) to St. Kitts to witness a match to determine the readiness of the Warner Park wicket for World Cup 2007. During that match, the then 15-year old Akheam opened the batting and occupied the wicket impressively. Andy asked around about the lad.
“His enquiries led him to me seated up in the players stand,” recalled David Fox, a manager at the Development Bank of St. Kitts and Nevis. “He came and sat down next to me and said ‘I gather that the youngster down there batting is your son’. I confirmed yes, and he advised ‘keep working with him. I am impressed with the way he falls into line to play. He has lots of time to play the ball… he has tremendous potential’. This intervention from Mr. Andy Roberts provided further inspiration for me to pursue Akheam’s continuous development to this day. Thank you Andy!”
Akheam’s mother, Lynette Fox, said of her son: “I am losing my son, but he is going to make himself bigger and better. I support his going, 300 percent.” Asked if Akheam would achieve whatever he wants, she replied: “Oh yes, because he knows what he wants and he is a child who is very determined and goes after what he wants.”
Further kudos for Akheam came from Sandra Arthurton, Keith Arthurton’s wife who watched the nine-year-old Akheam begin his cricketing career at their Bladens Development drive way. “One of the things that I recognised in Akheam is that he was so different from the others; the others wanted to play cricket.
“Akheam not only wanted just to play cricket, he wanted to play cricket and to be the best out there. I have said to Keith, for a long time, that if there is one of the players I know for a fact that is going to go somewhere, that is Akheam Fox. He has this temperament where he is very hard on himself. He believes that everything that he does it should be perfected.”
She said that Akheam’s travelling to Oxford Brookes University for his further studies is just the beginning of a lot of things that “we are going to hear about Akheam, because Akheam is destined for greatness.”