It’s often referred to as the “gentleman’s game” – but this team is determined to prove cricket is a women’s game too.
The 2016 season saw the first Blackpool Cricket Club female team for many years being entered into the Prosecco Women’s Cricket tournament.
The tournament was part of the initial launch by the England and Wales Cricket Board, aimed at getting females into cricket and sport.
Bosses at Blackpool Cricket club were keen to reach out to women and girls on the Fylde coast to promote not only cricket as a sport, but a fun and social activity bringing together junior and senior girls, who want to take part in a healthy and active activity.
Weekly training sessions take place every Wednesday evening, at 6pm, at the club’s Stanley Park ground.
More than 40 attend on a regular basis, and following successful recent friendly matches and fun cricket games with other clubs, the club says the popularity of the ladies game has grown rapidly.
Jane Boyne, who manages the BCC ‘Baes’ women’s section, said: “We have been overwhelmed with the numbers who come along on a Wednesday evening, but we can always accommodate more.
“We’ve been greatly supported by the club and the senior and junior coaching staff, who give up their time to run the friendly and fun coaching sessions.”
Sam Owen, head coach said: “From a coach’s point of view, it has been great to see ladies and girls from all backgrounds make friends completely from ‘fresh’.
“The support for one another has been fantastic. Considering we have only been going two hours a week since mid April, I have already seen friendships blossoming outside cricket, social gatherings etc.
“It’s great to see the ladies in the clubhouse together, whether it be for food, a natter or social drink.
“I am also convinced 100 per cent it has given certain women members a new lease and take on life – not only for the fact they are enjoying the sport which is so new to them, but also knowing they are apart of something and have a feeling of belonging somewhere too. This is the most rewarding bit.”
Sam says the main benefits from playing cricket include developing new skills, physical fitness, well-being of body and mind, having fun and friendship.
Jane added: “Having a reason to improve both your personal social and physical skills is sometimes difficult, especially when you’re working and running the home. The girls who have taken the step of coming down on a Wednesday have not looked back.
“We have a great laugh and what’s more each week they become more confident, feel the reward both in fitness, new skills and of course meeting new friends.”
On Friday, England’s finest and the world’s best women’s cricketers will be coming to Blackpool Cricket Club, as Lancashire Thunder take on Southern Vipers at 2.30pm.
Call Jane on 0779 138 7790 or come down to the club any Wednesday, 6 until 8pm.