Tens of thousands of boys and girls have played cricket for the first time this summer thanks to All Stars Cricket.
All Stars Cricket is a new initiative from the England and Wales Cricket Board in its second year, aimed at providing children aged five to eight with a great first experience in cricket. Every child that joined an All Stars Club receives a backpack full of goodies including a cricket bat, ball, activity book, personalised shirt and cap which has seen nearly than 60,000 children aged between five and eight took part in the programme across England and Wales.
The facts and figures for All Stars Cricket in Somerset are just as impressive with over 1800 children participating in the initiative across 48 different clubs which is an increase of over 600 children. Somerset are also the only county to have three clubs Lansdown, Clevedon & Bedminster attracting over 100 children to thier session.
Locally, Somerset County Cricket Club have supported All Stars Cricket with Tom Abell, Max Waller, Peter Trego, George Bartlett, Paul Van Meekeren and Stumpy all visiting All Stars Clubs and joining in at sessions which has been fantastic. Just last week the club hosted All Stars Cricket Day at The Cooper Associates County Ground for the Somerset vs Hampshire Vitality Blast match. This saw over 450 All Stars Cricketers with thier parents along with 150 All Stars Activators from All Stars Clubs across Somerset, Cornwall, Devon and Dorset attend the match free of charge and were able to go on to the pitch before the match for a celebration photo with Twinkle the All Stars Mascot and Stumpy the Somerset Mascot.
Matt Counsell, the Somerset Cricket Board League & Club Development Officer, who ran All Stars in Somerset, said: “Cricket among primary school-aged boys and girls has continued to be boosted thanks to the programme.
“Amongst the 48 clubs there were a number that didn’t already have a junior section in place, such as Bear Flat in Bath, Hardington & West Coker and West Monkton who had over 30 kids attending their sessions. We also had clubs significantly grow their youth sections with Lansdown in Bath attracting over 150 All Stars the 3rd highest in the country, with Clevedon & Bedminster also hitting the 100 mark.. There were also large numbers attending sessions at Backwell, Flax Bourton, Congresbury, Knowle, Long Ashton, Midsomer Norton, Taunton.and Wellington.
“We definitely got more bats and balls into kids’ hands and inspired them and their parents into a passion for cricket.
“Somerset County Cricket Club have been brilliant in their support as well from the amazing T20 ticket free ticket offer for the Hampshire T20 game and the likes of Tom Abell, George Bartlett, Max Waller, Peter Trego and Paul van Meekeren all taking part in a number of sessions with various clubs. Overall, I think that year two has just seen All Stars Cricket grow even more.”
To find out more about All Stars Cricket and to register your interest for next year visit allstarscricket.co.uk