How to get involved in cricket
Get started in cricket
The profile of cricket is on the up, thanks mainly to Twenty20 Cricket, which has introduced the game to a whole new generation of fans. Inevitably there's plenty of budding cricketers wanting to give it a go or return to a game they last played at school. Here's some top advice on where to turn if you want to get started in cricket...
Cricket has probably never been so popular! A renewed interest in the game at international level is creeping through to the grass roots of the sport, with more and more people wanting to get involved.
If the explosive action of Twenty20 cricket or the tactical battle of a Test Match has given you a burning desire to hear and feel the sound of leather on willow, but you’re not sure what you should do next, then read on.
Some people may be completely new to the game, while others may have played in the past and want to get back into it. The good news is that whatever your age or level of fitness, there is probably a team out there for you.
Many clubs have several teams from the First XI , right down to a fourth or fifth XI, with good junior ranks and coaching for beginners.
You need not concern yourself too much with the gear initially. Go along and try cricket out, maybe with a bit of instruction in the 'nets' (the off-pitch practice area), and then you might want think about buying the basic kit – consisting of cricketing ‘whites’ (clothing) and shoes and perhaps a ‘box’ – just in case! (There are male and female-specific boxes for protection in those sensitive areas!).
Most clubs will be able to lend you a cricket bat, pads, gloves and a helmet, all of which you can buy later for yourself if you become more involved.
A number of initiatives aimed at getting youngsters interested in cricket have been started, for example: Kiwi Cricket and Inter Cricket teach the basics and are played with a soft ball – so you need not worry about getting hurt. Players who feel they are up to facing the hard ball should start looking for a club.
The England and Wales Cricket Board are a useful source of information and their website – dedicated to putting people in touch with clubs and development officers – is the best place to start.
The 18 professional county cricket sides also have a variety of activities aimed at getting you involved, and a number of road shows travel up and down the country giving people a taste of the sport.
There also opportunities for people with disabilities to get involved, with table cricket, played on table tennis table, blind cricket for anyone with visual difficulties, and wheelchair cricket.