Formats a blast for kids
Patience was one of Michael Klinger’s key attributes as an opening batsman in Sheffield Shield cricket — but his children are a bit young for all of that.
Bailey, 8, and Summer, 6, are looking forward to their second season of Woolworths Cricket Blast — a fast-paced program to get children involved in the sport.
There are two variations — the 60-minute Junior Blasters format for ages 5 to 7 and the 90-minute Masters Blasters format for ages 7 to 10.
They are much more similar to Twenty20 cricket than the traditional two-day or five-day forms.
Each child gets a chance to bat, bowl and field. The pitches are shorter, the boundaries are shorter and there are fewer fielders.
Klinger is preparing for his fifth season with the Perth Scorchers — and his first at Optus Stadium.
“I’ve seen it with my own kids how they can get distracted and can’t keep concentration for three or four hours like you would have to do on a Saturday or Sunday morning,” Klinger said.
“I think this Woolworths Cricket Blast . . . it looks more like what their heroes do out in the middle when they watch the Big Bash.
“You probably won’t see the benefit of it for 10 years’ time when all these kids stay in the game and then maybe go into the highperformance leagues.”
Michael Klinger with Bailey and Summer.