Kate Cross Launches Girls Initiative
Kate Cross, Lancashire and England Women’s pace bowler, fresh from the recent Ashes victory, launched a girls cricket project.
The launch took place at the Reebok Stadium during half time of the recent Bolton’s Sky Bet Championship fixture against Burnley. Also present was Dave Cross, father of Kate and former Bolton Wanderers player in the 80s.
The project is a partnership venture between Bolton Wanderers Community Trust, Lancashire Cricket Board and Bolton Council. It reflects commitment from the 3 organisations to the engagement with the local community within Bolton. The main objective of the project is to provide opportunities for girls through cricket coaching and training programmes within secondary schools and by creating a club environment within the school settings to offer significant educational and sporting benefits to young girls. This will see increased girls’ participation in sport, particularly through cricket and improve pathways from secondary school to community sport and local cricket clubs.
The project involves delivering a comprehensive girls cricket development programme in all secondary schools in the Bolton area allowing girls to experience cricket coaching from experienced LCB coaches with particular expertise of working in women & girls cricket. The programme will be delivered both in curriculum and through after school sessions.
The programme will include training for young girls to support the long-term impact of the programme. Cricket Young Leaders / Activators Course will be organised to develop their skill levels and enable them to become more actively involved in the planning and delivery of club and competitive cricket opportunities. Places on Level 1 coaching courses will also be offered for the suitable candidates along with other training opportunities for umpiring, scoring and volunteering.
The programme will also have a competition framework, including indoor / outdoor, softball / hardball, intra-school and inter-school competitions. Cricket festivals will be organised to facilitate such opportunities. On-site coaching sessions at the local cricket clubs will also be part of the delivery to progress them into the community club environment.
Both BWCT and LCB have agreed to seek funding to make it a two-year project, with the aim to extend it and make it a sustainable initiative.
Rudra Singh, Education Manager for the LCB, said: “We are delighted to join in partnership with Bolton Wanderers Community Trust for this Women & Girls Cricket Project. Football and Cricket working together to support a community based programme is not only unique, but shows that there are common interests that have higher significance with the wider impact on the local communities, as opposed to operating within their own spheres.”
Richard Slater from BWCT had this to say of the launch and project: “For football and cricket to come together like this is completely unique and we are hoping that it will play as great role in developing girls and women’s cricket in Bolton. Today was a fantastic experience for all involved, the girls at Canon Slade School were treated to an international women’s cricketer coming down to speak to them all which is something that will hopefully inspire them to carry on with the cricket and progress in the future. I’d like to thank the LCB, Bolton Council and Kate and Dave Cross for attending the launch and making it a great day for all.”
LCB Women & Girls Cricket Development Officer added: “Opportunity to work in partnership with such a big brand in Bolton Wanderers Community Trust is excellent for women and girls cricket in Bolton. Girls will have the chance to experience cricket in the school environment and those who wish to take it further will have options in the community as well. This project has been launched at a key time for women’s cricket, with the England Women’s team winning the Ashes and also being rewarded with professional contracts, the world of Women’s cricket is on the up. We might find the next Kate Cross within these schools or we may provide Astley Bridge Women’s side with some talented players, both would be excellent outcomes.”
The project aims to increase participation of girls aged 14+ in cricket. This will be achieved through:
- 10 weeks coaching programme at all 17 high schools across Bolton
- 2 Cricket festivals
- 2 weekly community/club sessions
- 4 talent ID sessions
- Opportunities for young people to gain coaching and Young Leaders Award
- Teacher CPD through Cricket for Teachers course
Further images from the launch available at below.
Launch Images (2.6 Mb)