2018 has been a busy year for Girls cricket in Jersey. Participation numbers are up and the young players are thriving in an enjoyable environment.
Last weekend saw the culmination of this with the first ever junior girls inter insular cricket. Across the Saturday teams from both islands played 3 fixtures in a 16 over format. This was to ensure all the girls from both squads were able to take part.
Jersey were eventual winners 3-0 as their experience showed having had over 14 fixtures and weekly training sessions during the summer. It was a case of superb team performances and just a few of the contributors over the 3 games were Lily Greig scoring 34 not out in Game 1 and 23 in Game 2, Flo Tanguy was dangerous with the ball picking up regular wickets including 3-10 and Erin Gouge scored a free flowing 28 not out.
The Girls Academy, formed after a number of senior womens players retired from the game, is currently into its 2nd year of existence and has seen a large growth in numbers. During 2018 over 54 girls from ages 7 to 17 have been attending the academy sessions run by Academy coaches Rose Hill and Pete Rutherford. Rose, whose enthusiasm is evident, says ‘I’m so proud of the girls. They have worked so hard this summer to improve their skills. Having played lots of fixtures this year we are able to see the improvements week to week. We are building a good team of girls for the future’.
Initiatives being run by the Jersey Cricket Board are clearly drumming up interest in the game of girls and womens cricket. The inclusion of the Academy team in the Fairway Super League allowed the girls to play 8 fixtures against junior club sides to gain vital experience of hard ball cricket and play together as a team. Although the girls didn’t register a win during the tournament, it was noted by umpires and spectators that their team spirit and positivity each week was first class.
Another initiative (in partnership with Rathbones Investment Management) saw World Cup and Ashes winning ex England cricketer Lydia Greenway visit the island. During her visit Lydia was able to attend primary schools, Kwik cricket leagues and the academy sessions to pass on her vast knowledge of the game and inspire girls to take up the sport. JCB Development Manager, Lee Meloy, stated ‘We have been focusing on growing the women’s game from that base level in the last couple of years, so to provide the primary schools and development squads with access to a World Cup winner has been invaluable’.
In between all of this the girls' team went on tour to Nantes Cricket Club in France (rught) for the opening of their new ground. It was a great experience for the young team and one that has allowed the group to gel together on and off the field.
The academy group begin training again in November. Anyone interested in joining the Girls Academy should email Lee Meloy at email@example.com.