As the Far West Junior Cricket Association struggles to attract numbers for the upcoming season, president Mark Prince is urging any potential young cricketers and parents to come to next week’s annual general meeting (AGM).
Last season progressed with only two teams and about 25 players, and with the new season imminent numbers appear to be low yet again which has thrown the short-term future of the association in doubt.
Mr Prince said they lost a number of junior players to senior cricket and found there were not enough players coming through.
“There was a bit of a decline in the 2017-18 numbers, we went from about 30 to 35 players with four teams to 25 players and two teams,” he said.
“With that we trialled some new rules for under 13 players like shorter wickets and boundaries, and the trial proved successful.
“We had big numbers in the 16-year-old group who moved into senior cricket and didn’t have the next tier coming through.”
The AGM is on Monday, October 15 at the Ceduna Foreshore Hotel board room at 7pm and Mr Prince encouraged those looking to get involved to come along.
“We are struggling for numbers and had to recall the AGM, and we are struggling with nominations at this stage,” he said.
“We are looking for admin roles, getting parents involved and also players, so we don’t know what is going to happen.
“We are happy to talk with parents and players and look at what format we run – we are open to advice about how to proceed, whether we play on the weekend, midweek or a combination of both.”
Mr Prince said they would need at least 25 players for two teams, but hope to get more players involved as it was not ideal to play each other every week.
He said they would also look at the possibility of playing games against Streaky Bay, who also have two junior teams.
There is one training session a week and both that and the matches take place at Ceduna Area School.
There are also Woolworths Blast sessions for under 10s which leads into the T20 Blast competition starting in late January.
Mr Prince said getting involved in cricket at a junior level can lead to a long-time association with the sport.
“There’s mateship, you develop a good set of skills, and you learn about teamwork and leadership,” he said.
“When you look at the three senior teams in the Ceduna region, there are approximately 25 players that have a long history in junior cricket.
“Ten of the premiership-winning Thevenard team last year played junior cricket and eight of the Ceduna club that were runners-up played juniors.”
He said players would also have the opportunity to play cricket at a regional level in either the under 14 Quality Wool Cup or under 16 Horgan Shield during the season.
Mr Prince said all details about the AGM and association can be found on the ‘Far West Junior Cricket Association’ group page on Facebook, as well as the MyCricket website, and people can register their interest through those channels.