Weekly Cricket: Bordesley Green / Marston Green Cricket - January 2019 - January 2023
Updated: Feb 24
Since January 2019 in conjunction with our weekly football sessions, we have also been delivering regular cricket sessions at Bordesley Green Girls School. During the past four years we have been delivering indoor training sessions from October to March before linking young people into an amateur local cricket club named Marston Green. At Marston Green between the months of April and September, young people are able to benefit from outdoor training where they can further their skills and also play competitively against other recognised clubs and teams for their respective ages. This partnership with the cricket club has allowed for its youth section to grow but also to provide a pathway for young aspiring cricketers from inner city Birmingham. Furthermore it has also allowed for barriers such as racial stereotypes to be tackled and addressed with mainly BAME young cricketers from our session in Bordesley Green mixing and making friends with mainly white british young cricketers from Marston Green.
Another success story has been supporting a young individual named Yusuf Zaman get into the Warwickshire County Cricket setup for his respective age. Yusuf began his cricketing career with Street Futures before being linked into Marston Green and he has continued to flourish since. Our sessions, whether indoors our outdoors are delivered by ECB qualified cricket coaches who also play at a very high and competitive standard themselves.
The indoor sessions always start off with a warm up and some stretches before focusing on a specific aspect of the game whether that is batting, bowling, fielding, fitness or even tactics. Some times it is even broken down further such as batting through the off side, or bowling with a new ball. The reason behind this type of training is to make it as realistic as possible to what the young people will have to experience when they play competitively outdoors so that they are not out of their depths. Following the drills, we usually conclude the session with some net training to try and apply what we have focused and learnt. For the younger audience that aren’t comfortable playing with a hard cricket ball, we support them develop the basic skills necessary in cricket such as catching, throwing, bowling and hitting the ball when batting, before progressing them with a wind ball, incrediball and then finally with a hard ball. During the summer months, outdoor training has a similar structure, but now we can also practise high catching and utilise the large playing area we have, where young people can practise diving, hitting the ball further and also learning from mistakes made in previous matches.
Over the course of the past 3 years we have engaged at least 400 young people with 80% being from a BAME background and supported 4 individuals go on to complete cricket coaching qualifications, all of whom are now delivering sessions on a paid basis. This is vitally important, especially for the older young people we work with as they can see that it is possible for them to also become a qualified cricket coach and get paid rather than getting involved in anti social behaviour and risk getting into trouble with the police.