Watch the tearful moment a young cricketer sees colours for first time
As a huge cricket fan, young Charlie Jones, likes nothing better than training with his local cricket club.
However, due to being colour blind, the aspiring cricketer cannot see the red cricket ball against the green grass or green trees in the background.
Cricket is Charlie’s true passion and he dreams of playing in competitive games, however his game has suffered because of his condition.
“The ball tends to merge into the grass. Sometimes you can see it, sometimes it’s harder,” says Charlie. “Colour blindness affects me in ways where, in day to day life, colours around me merge together so it’s quite hard to distinguish things which are there”
His parents, Joanne and Darren, have known Charlie was colour blind since he was very young.
“We got a video of him very small, there was a pink balloon on the carpet and he just couldn’t see it at all” recalls Joanne.
“Charlie really struggles playing cricket especially because of the reds and the greens” adds dad Darren.
Now, the 11 year-old who plays with Brymbo Cricket Club, near Wrexham, has had his cricketing prowess improved immeasurably thanks to a pioneering pair of glasses and the dedication of his coach Gareth Roberts.
“I’ve seen him up at nets and he’s been doing really well with the game,” says Gareth. “On his first game, he was unfortunately bowled out on the second, maybe third, ball. He came up to me after, he was quite upset, and said that he just couldn’t see the ball.”
Gareth, wanting to do his best to help Charlie to play without being disadvantaged, reached out to the club to check whether there was anything they could do.
After researching if there was anything they could do to help, they discovered EnChroma, makers of glasses for the colour blind and promptly obtained a pair for Charlie.
When the moment came for Charlie to try the glasses on, it was very emotional for the youngster, his family and Brymbo Cricket Club, with plenty of tears shed on realisation that Charlie could now see colours.
“The glasses are absolutely amazing,” says the young cricketer. “I can see so many colours. I can see green, blue, purple, red, orange. The first thing I want to do is play cricket. I am super happy with my new glasses and I’m ready to experience life now.”
His parents and the cricket club were understandably overjoyed for Charlie, who can now enjoy life in technicolour and will be unstoppable, at cricket as well as in daily life.
How the colour blind see the world
At least one in 12 men (8%) and 1 in 200 women (0.5%) are colour blind. That is 350 million people worldwide and almost 3 million in the UK alone. Wrexham, with a population of 136,126, has 5,785 colour blind citizens.
Colour blind celebrities include Prince William, Eddie Redmayne, Rod Stewart, Mark Zuckerberg, Bill Clinton, Tiger Woods, Jack Nicklaus, and Neil Young.