Other sports just aren’t cricket
A centuries-old game needs new players to help safeguard its future in Marlborough.
Cricket was first recorded in 16th century England and was once the sport of choice for British nobles to bet on.
Played across the globe, the sport has been played in Marlborough since about 1863 when the earliest records show a match between Nelson and Marlborough took place in Nelson on March 6, 1863.
Current clubs would like to see an uptake of new players ahead of the start of the new season in October.
Picking up a cricket bat for the first time as a young child, Blenheim player Petros Kapralos knew he had found a game for life.
The resounding thwack of the ball on bat, cheers from the sidelines and the strong friendships forged across the years all make the game a ‘‘perfect fit’’ for him.
The Celtic Cricket Club member started playing with the team in 1997. He says the club has openings for both younger and older players.
‘‘I made my comeback three years ago and got back into it straight away.
‘‘The social benefit, the friendly rivalry make the team so much more and of course it’s a great way to keep fit too,’’ he says.
There are six cricket clubs in Marlborough; Celtic, Renwick, Picton, Wairau, Wairau Valley and United Country.
Marlborough Cricket Association general manager Ed Gilhooley says while player numbers have increased over the past two seasons, more players are always needed.
There are about 500 club
‘‘Children are still out there playing sport but they have so many other options.’’