An exciting season ahead looms for the Nelson Bay Junior Cricket Club.
A Come & Try day held at Nelson Bay’s Don Waring Oval on Monday, which was attended by Sydney Sixers players Ben Dwarshius and Jack Edwards, attracted more than 60 juniors aged five to 12.
Junior club secretary Matt Brealey said that the higher than expected number of participants included around half that number trying cricket for the first time.
“We are over the moon with the number of kids who have turned up considering we had rain earlier in the day,” Brealey said.
“We were particularly pleased with the number of girls taking part for the first time.”
In addition to the junior girls and boys team, the club is looking in season 2018/19 at fielding junior (aged 5-7) and master (7-10) Blasters teams, which teaches basic cricket skills and organising groups of players to play together.
“The junior Blasters will get underway on November 13 at Don Waring Oval, while the master Blasters will be played at Medowie’s Ferodale Oval starting on October 24.
“Nelson Bay will also field an all-girls junior cricket side (aged 9-17) in the Newcastle Junior Cricket Association competition to be played at Smith Park in Hamilton, starting on October 22.
“The club is also recruiting more qualified coaches and delivering more training, which all leads to an exciting season ahead for the Bay.”
The visit from Dwarshius and Edwards, organised as part of Cricket NSW Country Blitz, proved to be a tremendous hit with the kids. Earlier in the day, the Sixers players conducted a similar clinic at Shoal Bay Public School.
Dwarshius, a quick bowler, and Edwards, a batsman, were overwhelmed with the number of children and the level of skill among the youngsters.
“There is some real talent out there today. It is also great to see so many kids enjoying their cricket because that is by far the more important aspect for juniors,” Edwards said.
Cricket NSW general manager of community cricket, Ivan Spyrdz, said that regional and country NSW had always been a vital part in supporting junior cricket.
“Many of Australia’s finest players are from regional NSW and the Country Blitz is just one way to ensure we keep inspiring the next generation of fine cricketers from the country.”