10th Dec, 2016

Cricket programme set to launch in Coventry to find the next big star

Coventry Editorial 27th Feb, 2016 Updated: 28th Oct, 2016

THE SEARCH has begun to find the next Ben Stokes, Joe Root or Ian Bell after a new cricket scheme aimed at youngsters in Coventry and Warwickshire was launched.

Little Batters is a free ten-week programme that will introduce children aged from four to seven the basic cricket skills such as throwing, catching and batting, as well as developing confidence and encouraging team work.

It will be run for up to 100 children at Corley Cricket Club by their own ECB-accredited coaches and has been made possible thanks to a £2,000 grant from the Heart of England Community Foundation, one of the region’s grant-giving organisations.

“There are hardly any younger children playing cricket in the Coventry area at the moment, which doesn’t bode well for the future of the game in the City,” said Adam Webb, chairman of Corley Cricket Club who is the driving force behind setting the scheme.

“The Australians already have an established programme aimed at five to eight-year-olds that teaches skills like how to hit a moving ball and bowling with a straight arm. We need to follow suit.

“Little Batters will equip youngsters with all of the basic cricket skills in a fun and engaging environment, complete with music and different throwing, bowling and batting drills.

“The support from the Heart of England Community Foundation has been vital in setting up the programme.”

Now in its 21st year, the Heart of England Community Foundation works with a variety of donors to provide funding and support at a grassroots level for local organisations which are often under the radar of national funders.

And the foundation has distributed more than £50,000 in the past month to a variety of community groups.

Tina Costello, director at the Heart of England Community Foundation added: “The Little Batters programme did incredibly well over in Solihull, providing much enjoyment and lots of participation, so we were more than happy to help Corley Cricket Club to try and replicate this in the Coventry area.”

The first Little Batters session will take place on April 16, and each child can attend once a week either on a Saturday morning or Wednesday evening.

For more information or to find out how to apply, send an email to webbadam@tiscali.co.uk.