The ActivePost National Schools Programme is set to introduce over 100,000 young New Zealanders to the sport of cricket each year.
Have-A-Go Cricket (5-8 years) starts out as fun with friends, then moves to Kiwi Cricket (7-10 years) and can go much further as BLACKCAPS batsman Kane Williamson knows. He started playing cricket when he was six at Tauranga's Pillans Point Primary.
"Cricket was always a real passion, so any chance I could get to play whether at school or on a Saturday, I always jumped at the chance."
Williamson, who scored a century in Bangladesh last week, says junior cricket was where he developed his love for the game. "I certainly recommend every boy or girl has a go at cricket - I hope you enjoy it as much as I do."
The aim of the ActivePost National Schools Programme is to encourage kids to be active and foster a love of cricket. The programme operates through clubs, communities and schools. It supports participation, coaching and also umpiring activities.
New Zealand Cricket (NZC) Chief Executive David White says the relationship between NZC and ActivePost is key to ensuring the development of junior cricket in New Zealand. “We're delighted New Zealand Post has joined us in our vision to promote and introduce cricket to the next generation, a role which secures a bright future for our sport.
“The ActivePost National Schools Programme will have wide-ranging benefits for the whole community as people coach, umpire or simply watch from the boundary, as well as helping to develop our future BLACKCAPS and White Ferns,” said Mr White.
New Zealand Post Chief Executive Brian Roche says cricket's status as the country's number one summer sport makes the new alliance a perfect fit for the organisation, which has been providing service to New Zealand communities for over 170 years. “We're delighted to welcome junior cricket to the family of ActivePost partners – which includes junior hockey (Small Sticks Hockey), Water Safety NZ, Waka Ama, Athletics New Zealand and Sport New Zealand.
“Cricket is one of our favourite team sports, promoting a range of skills as well as providing the obvious health benefits from getting out there and having a go.We're proud to play a part in helping the next generation have the opportunity to enjoy this great game,” said Mr Roche.
Sport New Zealand Chief Executive Peter Miskimmin says as supporters of ActivePost, they're pleased to see the programme go from strength to strength. “We're keen to ensure Kiwi kids continue to have a sporty childhood, and ActivePost is doing its part to make sure that happens."