A Caymanian schoolboy has gone to England for a dream tryout with two pro football clubs in England, one of them a Premiership outfit.
Following on from the successful visit of Swindon Town’s Under-13 team last month, Cameron Gray who is with Sunset Football Club last week began training with the Chelsea Youth Academy and is scheduled to train with the Swindon Town Centre of Excellence soon.
Gray, 13, is the first youngster to benefit from the relationship established between Swindon Town’s Centre of Excellence, the Ministry of Health, Environment, Youth, Sports and Culture, the Cayman Islands Football Association and the West Bay Sports Foundation.
This opportunity to train with the world renowned Chelsea Youth Academy and Swindon Town’s celebrated Centre of Excellence came about following Gray’s stellar performance for Academy against Swindon’s team during their recent tour.
Founder of the West Bay Sports Foundation, Ardin ‘Cheeky’ Rivers, said: “This is the primary reason the West Bay Sports Foundation was established – so that Cayman’s youth would be recognised and have an opportunity to excel in sports.
“This type of partnership with professional clubs such as Swindon Town has helped make this opportunity for Cameron possible. The foundation wishes him all the best.”
The February tour was organised by the Ministry and the West Bay Sports Foundation in collaboration with a number of sponsors from the private sector. One of the major reasons for bringing over Swindon Town’s U-13 team and establishing this ongoing relationship with the Division 2 outfit was to gain opportunities such as this for Cayman’s youth to experience training with a professionally-based academy.
Gray attends St. Ignatius High School and was a member of Academy under coach Virgil Seymour for a few years, playing for the U-13 and U-15 teams. He has travelled extensively with the club, competing in the Schwann’s US Cup in Minnesota, the Dallas Cup in Texas and in a number of training games in Jamaica.
Seymour said: “Cameron has always shown great determination in his training as he always gives 100 per cent. He has had the benefit of being part of a proper youth development programme since he was nine, which has allowed him to train consistently, travel regularly to international tournaments and play against teams from all over the world. I believe Cameron is ready for the challenge he now faces and as a club, we are proud and very excited for him.”
Gray is expected to spend up to a month in England training with Chelsea and Swindon Town.