AMBITIOUS Harwich and Dovercourt Cricket Club have started planning and training for next season – and they are setting their sights on title glory.
The Low Road side will compete in Marshall Hatchick Two Counties Championship division five again and their fixtures begin in April.
That may be several months away – and this year’s campaign only finished in September – but no stone will be left unturned in the pursuit of success in 2018, according to skipper and new chairman Lee Davis.
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It’s no secret that participation in sport comes in ebbs and flows. Trends in sports’ uptake can be predicted by a variety of factors; which sports have recently become popular in schools, which sports are enjoying success and media coverage at a national level, and which sports have recently had major events globally. With the advent of technology, we often see fast-paced, fun sports being most popular, and slower-paced, subtle sports being outed. Unfortunately, some might say that sounds eerily like cricket!
Cricket however, has a saviour! Twenty20. The ‘problem’ child as deemed by cricket purists, has brought about much a needed ‘excitement factor’ to the game. Junior cricket has a new lease on life and organisations are promoting a shorter, more explosive brand of the game. The younger generation are playing with amazing freedom and most importantly, participation numbers are steadier. The questions now are; how do we minimise participation drop-off in cricket, and how do we maintain the ‘high’ cricket is currently enjoying?
Based on my experience playing and coaching cricket at various levels, here are five tips that may help with this:
1. Make use of your Major Organisation
Most cricket organisations around the world are now fully aware of the importance that having fun and retaining youth participation in cricket is. Gone are the days of trying to make juniors play with proper rules and traditions, it was boring for them. For this reason, they have developed many hybrid cricket games and coaching philosophies designed to instill excitement. Use these organisations and apply as many of the recommended coaching techniques and methodologies as you can to your kid’s team. There is plenty of time in the future for them to start playing more seriously and learn the traditional game. The skills they learn now will put them in great stead for this, don’t underestimate this.
2. Employ outsourced, enthusiastic coaches
Many parents act as volunteer coaches during their kids’ junior years. These efforts are integral to the cricketing community and should be recognised and awarded. However, the value of employing a qualified, enthusiastic coach might just be, that much more beneficial. Reasons being; children tend to start ignoring parents and become uncoachable; they see you everywhere and unfortunately not all parents are deemed ‘cool’. There will probably be many parents nodding their heads to this statement and it certainly does not apply to every single one. Experience coaches can be more relatable, can converse with kids on their level and most importantly keep their attention and get them to do as they say! If affordability around this becomes an issue, alternatively organise guest coach appearances which can also give parents great ideas for coaching techniques.
3. Use technology to engage, coach and develop
Kids love it, kids understand it, use it. That’s about all that needs to be said but let’s elaborate. Technology in cricket is gaining traction through all levels. The feedback that used to be available only at a professional level is very quickly growing to a grassroot level. Make use of these technologies where you can. Video feedback is a great tool for coaching, phones now have amazing slow motion capabilities and actually provide a very powerful vehicle for instant feedback. Start documenting this where you can so you have timelines of progression. This can act as supporting proof to show development and be very rewarding for both you and the young cricketers. Additionally many apps are available that include hundreds of ideas around drills, skills and games.
4. Encourage one-to-one coaching
It is slowly becoming common knowledge that an hour of one to one coaching is as valuable as a few weeks of team trainings. Having all energy focussed on your child for an hour, with a coach who knows what they are talking about is invaluable. Visually, you can see improvements happen in front of your eyes, especially in the first few sessions. This type of coaching is certainly on the rise and you may already be doing this. Financially, there is a cost associated. If this is a concern, perhaps to start, you could set aside enough for 5 sessions initially. Once you see the results, you’ll likely never look back.
5. Promote development by encouraging freedom and fun
Encouraging freedom is a very loose term in a coaching sense. So what exactly does it mean? Well, kids are watching players on TV doing incredible things, from the player’s shots, bowling techniques and fielding feats. They all want to try these and emulate certain cricketers, sometimes a different cricketer every week! Allow this to happen as it’s part of growing up as a cricketer. Don’t be so strict on getting them to decide what they want to be. If they are trying everything when they can, they will have a fair idea of what they are good at eventually. Everyone becomes their own cricketer eventually and there is nothing wrong with having some experimentation along the way.
The predicament of diminishing participation in sport is upon us. Too often we hear the ‘back in the day’ gloated speech rather than proactive movements to solve the issue. We are essentially fighting a battle to make sport more enjoyable than alternative and generally unhealthy options for kids. Preventing the issue now will be a whole lot easier than fixing a potential crisis in the future. The time to act is now.
Blog Written by Peter Younghusband
Are you looking for good social and friendly cricket?
We are a friendly, well-established Cricket Club who play friendly matches as well as League games. We are on the look out for fresh blood to help complete our teams.
Harwich and Dovercourt Cricket teams consist of players from all ages, all backgrounds and all abilities and we have plenty of space to fit you in a team where you feel comfortable.
If you are interested in joining please contact Paul Grubb or Lee Davis for more information.
We look forward to welcoming you! If you have kids that are interested, we also have youth teams that are crying out for players.
A bowler delivers the ball overarm. He generally starts with a run to add speed to the ball, and he usually aims to hit the pitch before striking the wicket. He varies both the direction and the length of the bowl. A straight ball goes in a direct line with the wicket. If spin is imparted to the ball, it will come up from the pitch at an angle.
An off break ball hits the pitch on the off side of the wicket and turns toward the batsman and leg side; a leg break ball hits on the leg side of the pitch and turns across the face of the bat to the off. Bowlers also can make the ball swing in flight.
An inswinger swerves from off to leg, thus moving into the batsman; an outswinger swerves from leg to off, moving away from the batsman.
A ball is said to be good length if it comes off the pitch at such a distance from the batsman as to make him uncertain whether to step forward to play his stroke or to move back.
For fast bowlers the wicketkeeper stands 12 to 15 yards behind the stumps. He crouches close to them to receive bowls of slow bowlers.
The striker should take a comfortable stance, with the weight evenly balanced on both feet and the knees slightly relaxed for easy and quick movement. The bat should be held straight (vertical), with the full face toward the ball.
The batsman may either stop the bowled ball or hit it. By shifting his feet and wrist, he can hit the ball in any direction.
If he makes a hit he decides whether or not to run; if the ball goes behind the wicket, his partner decides.
The basis of all batting strokes is the forward stroke to a straight ball. The striker steps with the front foot down the pitch, and hits the ball in front of the forward foot.
Other strokes include the drive, in which the batsman lifts his bat higher than for the forward stroke and meets the ball just behind the forward toe; the leg glance, in which he deflects a ball bowled in a line with or outside his body to the on side; the hook stroke, in which he hits a short rising ball to the on-side with a cross bat; the square cut, in which he hits a short ball outside the off stump by stepping across the wicket and hitting down; the late cut, in which he plays a short ball outside the off stump, stepping across with his right foot and sending the ball past the slips. Cutting is an effective way of getting runs off short, fast balls bowled outside the off stump.
The condition of the pitch, as well as the weather, affects the bounce and liveliness of the ball. A pitch is judged fast if the ball comes off the ground quickly, and slow if it comes off sluggishly. During a match a pitch cannot be changed unless it becomes unfit for play, and then only with both captains’ consent. If the captain of the side winning the toss believes the pitch and weather favor batting, he will probably take first innings.
The format can be very simple as below, or might include a photograph, audio sample, even video, building the relationship with the visitor. Maps and directions can also be useful if you have a physical presence you wish to point out.
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The origin of cricket is unknown. Most probably, its name was derived from the Old English cryce, which means “stick,” and, in its rude form, resembled the 13th century game known as club-ball.
Cricket evolved in England in the 18th century, mainly because of the interest of great landowners who tried their skills on a field of play with their tenants and the local peasantry.
Records show that teams from Kent and London played each other in 1719, and that Kent and Sussex met in 1728.
The earliest written laws (rules) date back to 1744. The Hambledon Club in Hampshire was the focal point of cricket from 1768 to about 1788.
It attracted the chief patrons and best cricketers in the land and was the place where cricket took a great step forward from the rather rustic pastime that it was to the game it is today.
In 1787, Thomas Lord, a Yorkshireman, opened a cricket ground in London, and in that year the Marylebone Cricket Club was formed.
Today the present Lord’s at St. John’s Wood is the most famous cricket venue in the world and the M. C. C. is the authoritative source of all cricket legislation.
As early as 1859 an All-England team toured Canada and the United States, and in 1861 a team toured Australia. Australia won the first recorded international match in Melbourne in 1877, defeating England by 45 runs. 5 years later, in 1882 Australia won again in London.
The Sporting Times in a mock obituary said “In affectionate remembrance of English cricket. … The body will be cremated, and the Ashes taken to Australia.”
Since then matches between England and Australia, called The Ashes, have been the highlight of cricket competition. Other participants in Test matches include South Africa, the West Indies, New Zealand, India, and Pakistan. The ruling body for the Test matches is the International Cricket Conference, founded in 1909 as the Imperial Cricket Conference.
The year of the first official championships between the counties in England is recognized in 1890. In 1904 the M. C. C. formed the Advisory County Cricket Committee, which has dealt with every aspect of this major English contest since.
The Women’s Cricket Association was founded in England in 1926. Women compete on an amateur basis. In 1958 the International Women’s Cricket Council was formed.
History of Cricket in the US
Cricket has been played in the United States since the 18th century; the first formal clubs were formed in the 1820s. During the 1850s and 1860s, the popularity of cricket rivaled that of baseball. Later in the 19th century, American teams sometimes competed against British and Canadian teams. A few players from this time in the sport’s history are regarded very highly. Nonetheless, interest in the game waned and, by the early 20th century, organized cricket almost vanished in the United States. The game is still played, although primarily by informal clubs composed of immigrant members.
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