Youngsters getting a taste of cricket
Te Kura o Maketu¯ is one of five local schools whose pupils are getting a taste of cricket.
Te Puke Cricket Club player Simon Eves visited the school last week to pass on some basic skills as part of Western Bay of Plenty Cricket’s Cricket Awareness programme.
Te Puke Primary, Te Ranga, Pongakawa and tamara¯kau Schools’ pupils are also getting a taste of leather on willow before the end of term 3.
The programme was part of a junior cricket pathway introduced in 2010 with the formation of the Western Bay of Plenty Cricket Association.
From the initial idea, the programme has grown to encompass 4000 Year 1-4 pupils a year.
The cricket awareness programme focuses on the basics of playing the game such as holding the bat, catching the ball and the rudiments of bowling.
The Western Bay Cricket development team deliver a 45-minute session to their young audiences, many of whom who have never held a bat or thrown a ball before.
“While many of our potential young cricket recruits have had minimal contact with the game of cricket, they quickly respond to the basics delivered by our qualified instructors,” says WBOPCA cricket manager Don Warner.
“The emphasis is always about having fun, with the volume of laughter and number of smiles taken as our measure of the effectiveness of the programme.”
Running in tandem with the schools introduction sessions is the NZ Cricket Superstars Academy.
The Academy is an afterschool cricket induction programme which follows on from the school cricket visits.
Western Bay of Cricket runs the eight-week module of basic cricket instruction in midOctober. This season’s Superstars programme will be run at Gordon Spratt Reserve in Pa¯pa¯moa, Pemberton Park, Blake Park and at Fergusson Park on Saturday mornings.
“While Superstars continue to provide the basics of the game it also provides kiwi-cricket modified games. The aim is to provide a pathway to Saturday morning division two and three competitions after the Christmas holiday break,” says Don.
TE Puke Cricket Club player and Cricket Awareness coach Simon Eves with pupils at Te Kura o Maketu¯.
SIMON Eves helps Brooklyn Morunga with her catching technique at Te Puke o Maketu¯.