Drighlington Primary School children have been benefiting from a free cricket coaching initiative involving Bradford League club Adwalton CC.
Coaches from the club have been running an after school programme at which they have been passing on tips in an introduction to playing cricket.
Local plastering firm Colin Laycock & Sons have sponsored training shirts for the children to wear in the cricket sessions and Adwalton CC are hoping to turn this into an annual event.
Adwalton cricket coach Chris Priestley explained: “For a number of years we have noted that the numbers participating in both junior and senior cricket have been declining.
“Our current under 17s team have been at the club through from under 7s and we noted that getting children interested in cricket at a young age was key. We therefore approached Drighlington Junior School and were kindly granted the opportunity to run an eight-week after school programme providing an introduction to the sport for both boys and girls.
“Attendance numbers have been strong with at least 15 children attending every session. The development of the children’s skills and in particular hand to eye co-ordination has noticeably improved. Several players have already progressed through to training with the under 9s team at Adwalton.”
The boost is numbers is a welcome reward for the junior cricket co-ordinator Simon Lindsay, who said: “The main focus is increasing the children’s basic athletic ability and interest in sport, ideally leading to playing at Adwalton CC.
“The school have been fantastic to work alongside and we are already looking at other initiatives for coaching during school lessons and in conjunction with Yorkshire CCC.
“Adwalton has junior teams at under 9, 11 and 17 age groups. We are extremely proud of the number of girls who play cricket at the club and one key goal in the forthcoming years is to establish a girls team at the club. Any players old or young are always welcome, particularly any aged 5-8 who qualify for the All Stars Programme. This is an ECB funding programme aimed at getting as many children involved in cricket at a young age.
“Adwalton CC have been selected to provide the training course which runs for eight weeks starting this Friday. Any parents wishing to register their children can search ECB All stars and Drighlington and the link to the Adwalton Programme will appear. Signing up to the programme then provides the junior the equipment needed to practice and hone the skills to hopefully one day emulate the successes of the current Yorkshire team.”
For further information on any cricket related matters at Adwalton, contact Simon Lindsay at firstname.lastname@example.org>