Cricket: Jack Livi-ing the dream with Scotland as he praises boyhood club Livingston

By Gary Heatly

Nineteen-year-old all-rounder Jack Jarvis is excited ahead of his first tour with the full Scotland men’s squad.

Scotland head off on Wednesday and will play their final Cricket World Cup League Two One Day International matches in the 2019-2023 cycle against the hosts and Namibia later this month.

They have already secured their place at the World Cup qualifier in Zimbabwe in June and July, but want to end the CWCL2 campaign – and end head coach Shane Burger’s reign – on a high.

“I am really looking forward to the trip,” Jack, who is currently in his second year at Edinburgh Napier University studying business and part of the Performance Academy thanks to Cricket Scotland’s link up with Napier, said.

“Obviously I am new to the group, but just having been around the players of late there is a really good buzz and everybody has been really welcoming.

“It is also good that other young guys like Tom Mackintosh and [developmental player] Liam Naylor are part of this trip too as we know each other pretty well and having each other around will help us all.

“To have the chance to potentially make my full Scotland debut in Nepal is an exciting prospect and when I get out there I just have to keep working hard as I have been all winter.”

Jack’s cricketing journey began at his local club Livingston where his Dad Neil use to play a massive part.

Neil very sadly passed away in 2020, but not before Jack was able to team up with him in the senior XIs at the club and those were special moments for the family.

“I loved my time at Livingston, I played junior cricket there until I was about 11 and then moved to Grange, but I was still able to play senior cricket at Livi,” Jack recounted.

“Those senior games in the next three years or so allowed me to learn a lot and also play alongside my Dad and when I was about 14 or 15 I began to play senior cricket at Grange.

“I started in the third XI and worked my way up to the first XI where I am playing regularly.

“Coming through my teens at Grange it was great to have so many experienced players around me in the various teams while, as I moved up into the firsts, it was very helpful that there was a batch of guys my age doing the same and we have kind of all grown up together.

“Grange is an excellent club and I love it there, but just going back to Livingston for a minute it is important to note just how many people volunteer and give up their time to keep a community club like that thriving.

“I am sure it is the same at many community clubs up and down the country and there are people involved day and night to make sure the junior section is always growing, umpiring matches, sorting out kit and many other jobs, the list is endless.

“Without them the clubs would not run and I’d just like to thank the people at Livingston who helped me along the way.

“I still like to get back there and coach when I can or just help out and hopefully if current junior members can see me in the Scotland squad then they’ll think to themselves anything is possible.”

During his last few years of school Jack was given a cricketing scholarship to attend Loretto School in Musselburgh while, at the start of 2022, he was in the West Indies with the Scotland under-19 squad at the age-grade World Cup.

“There were some tough results over there against some strong teams, but we all learnt a lot and it was good to be exposed to opponents who were of a high standard,” Jack said.

“I feel like I took a lot of learnings from the tournament and, as a result, I was able to kick on later in 2022 playing for Grange, the Eastern Knights, the Performance Academy and the Scotland ‘A’ team.

“As a player, I’m always looking to improve my batting, bowling and all-round game and I’m sure this trip will help me do that.”

“He has obvious qualities which you do not see every day”

 Current head of the junior section David Vettese – and everyone at the Livingston club – is proud of Jack.

“My first recall of seeing Jack play cricket was at a juniors winter practice session at Deans High School around 2014,” David said.

“He was working with coaches Robert Bowering and Mark Gray and it was immediately obvious that he’d listened to the advice given to him by his now late father, Neil, just prior to the session. He held the bat correctly, moved his feet in the right direction, his hands and head were all correct – not bad for a first session!

“Within a few years, he was in the Livingston Cricket Club’s second XI and then the first XI and scoring many runs and taking wickets. He has obvious qualities which you do not see every day.

“Many that played against him back then still stop me and tell me their recollections of a lad that could take massive catches and hit the ball to the boundary at such a young age.

“Latterly with his move to the Grange we watch from Livingston Cricket Club with immense joy and pride at the man and player he has become.

“The Grange club’s coaches have given him the opportunity to blossom into the huge talent that we are so excited to see progress into the senior Scotland team.

“The joy has a significant edge to it as we see the player that is so like his late father Neil, a Livingston stalwart who was taken far too soon with whom many of the current teams and board enjoyed playing alongside.

“But Jack is very much his own man and he is now the Scotland player that all the Livingston juniors – and many seniors – look to as the player they aspire to be.

“As a club we wish him every success and we will be his biggest supporters throughout his Scotland career.”

Inspired by Jack’s story and want to get involved in cricket at Livingston Cricket Club? to find out more visit, it really is a game – and a club – for all males and females…

More information on Scotland’s tour featuring Jack can be found here 

Thanks to Livingston CC and Cricket Scotland for the photos