Chance to shine participants

Focus On ... Cricket

How Cricket Scotland are creating an even playing field for inclusion

For all sports across the nation, the ability to ensure your sport is accessible to as many people as possible is an evergreen priority. This is no different for Cricket Scotland, who are consistently looking at new projects which can bring as many new people in to the sport as possible

These projects will play an important part in the development of the sport in the future – but also, in many cases, developing skills within the participants in the process.

Providing a “Chance to Shine”

For the first time ever, The Yorkshire Tea National Cricket Week came north of the border in 2021 thanks to a brand-new partnership between Cricket Scotland and the children’s charity Chance to Shine.

The National Cricket Week is a week-long celebration which aims to inspire children to take part in cricketing activities for their very first time. It also provides a chance to showcase the work that Chance to Shine does in bringing Cricket to hundreds of thousands of children every year.

The Chance to Shine programme aims to engage thousands of young people affected by youth crime and suffer from a lack of access to the traditional cricket clubs. The charity aims to give all children the opportunity to play, learn and develop through cricket, teaching key life skills and supporting their physical, social, and mental wellbeing.

Scottish cricket international Mark Watt, who joined pupils for activity on Princes Street, said:

“This programme is massively important. It is something I wish that we had during my time at school. It’s a great sport for children’s development, especially around working well as a team.”

Creating Champions for the sport

This year Cricket Scotland have also announced the first three clubs to be accepted into their  Disability Cricket Champion Clubs (DCCC) Programme. These clubs are Dumfries Cricket Club, Strathmore, and Westquarter & Redding Cricket Club.

The funding for the project was provided by Beyond Boundaries and will support the clubs to open their gates and deliver cricket opportunities for those with disabilities. Support will be provided through providing guidance, resources, and equipment, enabling them to welcome individuals with additional needs and varying abilities to support them to play cricket or officiate.

Every Disability Cricket Champion Club will also receive a free kit bag containing playing equipment and a range of balls and markers to help facilitate coaching drills and games, along with support from Cricket Scotland to promote and deliver their inclusive cricket sessions. Cricket Scotland Chief Executive Gus Mackay said:

“Access to adapted and easy to use equipment can play a crucial role in enabling coaches to ensure that everyone is able to enjoy the game, so we know that this, along with the in person support they will receive, will allow clubs to provide even more opportunities for disabled people in Scotland to take part in cricket.”

However, there is also a consistent approach to providing gender equality within the sport as well. This is through programmes such as The Wee Bash.

The Wee Bash

The Wee Bash was launched in 2017 as the brand-new Cricket Scotland Women & Girls’ indoor cricket tournaments. Monthly tournaments are played alternately in Glasgow and Edinburgh culminating in a Finals Day at the National Cricket Academy, MES Sports Centre in Edinburgh.

Nic Wison, Cricket Scotland’s Head of Participation said:

“It’s fantastic to see so many teams from across Scotland enjoying The Wee Bash. It is very much a social event, a way to keep in touch outside the traditional summer cricket season.”

The short 5-over format means games are fast and exciting to play in. The “windball” allows for players of all abilities to mix. Throughout the programme’s lifetime, several mother-daughter combinations have even starred The Wee Bash!

Find Out More

- About Cricket Scotland

- About The Wee Bash

- Cricket on Sport First

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