Former Somerset and England all rounder Ian Blackwell is back at the Cooper Associates County Ground working with the Academy youngsters on a regular basis.
‘Blackie’ played for Somerset between 2000 and 2008 and was an integral part of the teams that won the Cheltenham and Gloucester Trophy at Lord’s in 2001 and the Twenty20 Cup in 2005.
During his career, which included one Test Match and 34 ODI appearances for England, the big hitting left handed batsman and slow left armer scored 11,500 First Class runs at an average of 39.57. This included 27 centuries and a best of 247 not out. He also took 398 wickets at 35.91.
Now he is back at Taunton helping to develop the next generation of Somerset players about which he said: “It has been good helping out at the ground with the Academy players, especially the left handers. Young Louis Shaw, who is a promising slow left armer, looks a great prospect so I’ve enjoyed talking to him and helping him. Eddie Byrom, a left handed batsman, is another player with immense talent. Working with him on batting in the one-day arena and facing spin has been a good challenge. Eddie is a well grounded individual with a great work ethic and he wants to learn and better himself. It’s been a pleasure helping him and I predict big things for Eddie, similar to what Tom Abell has done for himself.”
Eddie Byrom said: “ It is a great experience for me to have the chance to work with someone like Ian Blackwell, who was a world class left hander. He has talked with me a lot and I am sure it will help me with the development of my own game.”
Steve Snell SCCC’s Academy Director said: “ I have always had the very highest regard for Blackie, who was a very talented player in all formats of the game. As a left hander he has a lot to share with the likes of Eddie Byrom and Louis Shaw and we are very fortunate to be able to involve him with the Academy.”
Pictured left to right in the main image are: Eddie Byrom, Charley Reed, Louis Shaw, Calvin Harrison, Joe Gore, Ian Blackwell, Tom Lammonby and Ben Green