BUDDING cricket players should concentrate on honing their basic skills rather than jumping to fancy tricks, said Patrick Fordham, captain of the Hong Kong cricket team. Fordham, who led the Hong Kong team to a sensational victory over the star-studded Indian team on the open day of the 4th Hong Kong International Cricket Sixes, told Young Post that young cricketers should not be tempted to copy the 'little tricks' that professional players were fond of using. 'When they [young players] go to watch tournaments like the Cricket Sixes, they will see bowlers throwing the ball as if it were a slow one. But the throw would turn out to be very fast. That's one of the tricks that experienced players can do. 'Young players would be better off concentrating on getting the fundamental skills right before picking up tricks,' Fordham said. For those of you who are not familiar with cricket, it should be pointed out that its main attraction is the fast delivery of the ball from bowlers who attempt to hit the wicket made up of three vertical rods (stumps) on top of which perch two horizontal rods (bails). A batsman stands in front of the wicket to protect the bails from being knocked off. Fordham suggested that young players visit one of the four local cricket clubs and see for themselves what professional training they should go for. On top of that, they have to build up muscles that particular players need. 'Bowlers must have strong back and shoulder muscles for the throw. For batsman, a pair of strong legs and arms are important.' He added that cricket was like 'chess on the field' because it involves a lot of thinking and strategies. Hong Kong people usually associate cricket with expatriate players. But at the recent Sixes tournament, Eddie Tse - the first local player in an international game - created history and helped the Hong Kong squad to a smashing win. 'This is a milestone in my cricket career. I never thought I would be in the Sixes,' Tse said. Although Hong Kong beat the Indian team, it failed to make it to the final in which the South African team snatched the title. The South Africans, captained by Hansje Cronje, beat defending champions England and walked away with a US$100,000 (HK$770,000) diamond encrusted gold bat and a $206,250 cash award.