The first thing that caused me to gravitate to him was his personality: an affable individual, whom I quickly surmised, everyone loved. Kimani Melius recently made headlines when he struck gold at a recent cricket match, CARE versus the Babonneau Secondary School; the 14-year-old teen scored a mouth gaping 275 runs, “the highest ever individual score recorded in the history of the tournament,” according to an article published in The VOICE Newspaper.
Captain of his school’s cricket team, Kimani, in an interview with YO, at his school, Babonneau Secondary, said that he has been playing the sport for eight years now. His love for the sport increased when he was selected to represent Saint Lucia at the Windward Islands under 15 tournament in 2014 which Saint Lucia won.
“When I was selected, (we had a few matches and I performed well in those matches), I realized I could take it on to the next level so I started taking my training seriously,” he shared.
The form two student when questioned on whether he thought he would score so many runs, shared that it was not a great surprise, as the previous day, he scored 126 in a trial match. Make no mistake, this isn’t serendipity; the student is unbelievably gifted in this area.
“Before I scored the 275, I had four hundreds before that; 100 not out, 126 twice, and 100 under 275; these were at the trials. I also had a score of 120 too.”
Kimani describes the sport as a tough one; one simply can’t pick up a bat and instantly deem themselves a cricketer. (Obviously). When questioned on whether he’s a “natural” or whether he acquired his skills after much practice, he replied, “it’s a learning process for all cricketers. No one is perfect but on the day of the match, you must make it your day and get a big score.”
He names Virat Kohli from India as his favourite cricketer, but whether he will go on to become household names like Kohli and Lara, (Brian), we can only keep our fingers crossed whilst murmuring a prayer.
His favourite shot, he says, is the Cover Drive. (Wicked!)
One thing is certain; he obtained wisdom in his early years. “All cricketers have ups and downs, good times and bad times, times they will not score and times they will score and when it’s time for you to score, you make use of your opportunity.” Well said Melius, bravo.
Such a sudden step into the spotlight, by all means, would cause most to be appreciative. He is. And he has undoubtedly made many proud. School’s hero, one can say.
“When the principal spoke of my achievement, the teachers clapped for me and commended me,” he said proudly.
His years at the school so far, he describes as “excellent”; he went on to say, “I like to share my travel experiences with my classmates, I like to joke around in class sometimes, but when it’s time for work, I’m always serious and willing to help those that are weak in their subjects.”
A “Peer Helper” at his school, Kimani says his favourite subjects are Mathematics, Social Studies and French.
Not only does the student attend Babonneau Secondary, but he is a resident of the area as well. Over the years, the community has produced rich sporting history: Albert Reynolds, Levern Spencer and Alvin Lafeuille.
He doesn’t take all the credit for himself however; his coach plays a significant role in his life. “My coach, Alton Crafton, really motivates me. He tells me what to do: when I’m performing poorly in cricket, he’ll tell me which shots to play and which shots not to play and when I’m doing the right thing, he’ll cheer for me and support me fully,” he said.
One thing I noticed during our interview is that Kimani is always on the ball. He quickly responded to my questions with no hesitation; it’s as if he’s prepared for anything that comes his way. His smile, which never disappeared during the interview, and easy going nature, showed off the wonderful personality that compliments his gift.
Kimani, who practices five days a week, says his greatest aspiration is to become the world’s best batsman and have “all records” under his belt. The teen has great expectations, but is unafraid to dream big.
In case you’re curious, he does not play any other sport; solely cricket. He enjoys running however, he mentioned.
Before we concluded our interview, he had this to say: “Firstly I would like to thank God for what He has done for me, if it wasn’t for Him, I wouldn’t be in this place. I would like to thank my mother for what she has done for me, my teammates for supporting me whilst I am batting out there and my coach for pressuring me and telling me to do the right things.”
No doubt, Kimani Melius, has not only made all those mentioned proud but his nation as well. Continue to make great strides my brother; you have our support, 100 percent!