Lambton cricketer Aidan Cahill has received a Basil Sellers Scholarship, allowing him to pursue his dream of becoming an elite cricketer.

Aidan Cahill is a talented batsman and medium-pace bowler. Photo supplied: Bryce Garrett.

The 18-year-old Newcastle City Cricket Club member was only just selected in the Australian Under 19 World Cup Preliminary Squad and has now been named a 2021-2022 All-rounder Basil Sellers Scholarship recipient.

The program awards scholarships to talented under-19 male and female cricketers, supporting them and their families with expenses such as education, travel and relocation costs.

Cahill is one of 12 players awarded a scholarship in 2021-22, all having progressed through the Cricket NSW Pathway system, representing either NSW Metropolitan or ACT/NSW Country.

“I’m humbled to be awarded a Basil Sellers Scholarship,” Cahill said.

“It’s a very prestigious honour, and I am still shocked to have received it.

“This scholarship means a huge amount to my whole family, and it will certainly help my development as an aspiring cricketer and support my educational studies.”

Cahill, a talented batsman and medium-pace bowler, took an impressive 37 wickets at an average of 12.92 in the Newcastle premier cricket competition last season.

He has also featured prominently for Northern Districts in the Poidevin Gray U21 competition, where he scored 234 runs at an average of 46.80, including 115 runs off 67 deliveries against Penrith.

Founder and philanthropist Basil Sellers said the scholarship would help the young cricketers on their journey to represent their country at the highest level.

“The perfect cricketing all-rounder is not just someone who performs in the middle but understands the importance of personal development away from the sporting arena through education,” Sellers said.

“By their actions, they are revered as role models and leaders amongst their peers, while conducting themselves in a manner which is in keeping with the spirit of our great game.

“I look forward to following the progress of this year’s recipients and encourage all to seize upon the support and opportunities they have been afforded as they look to follow in the footpaths of previous scholarship holders who have gone on to not only represent but captain Australia.”

Aidan Cahill batting for Newcastle City Cricket Club. Photo supplied: Bryce Garrett

The new recipients take the total number to be awarded a Basil Sellers Scholarship since its launch in 2006 to 144.

There have been 20 recipients who have gone on to represent Australia, including Ashleigh Gardner, Alyssa Healy, Ellyse Perry, Stella Campbell and Hannah Darlington, and Test stars Pat Cummins, Mitchell Starc and Steve Smith.

Cricket NSW Chief Executive Lee Germon thanked Sellers for his significant contribution to developing the state’s best cricketers.

“Basil Sellers is one of the Australian sport’s most generous philanthropists, and his ongoing support of the state’s emerging talent is not only appreciated by the recipients and their families but by the wider NSW cricket community,” Germon said.

“His incredible generosity has supported the careers of over 140 of NSW and Australia’s finest cricketers, whilst reinforcing the importance of not only being great athletes but better people.”

Hayley McMahon