Beach and night cricket a great success in Israel

Mon, Nov 19, 2012 12:10 PM

Beach and night cricket a great success in Israel
As the development of cricket across the continent looks to entice more people into playing the game, more versions are now accessible to everyone to enjoy and we are focusing on beach and night cricket which Israel have kicked off.

Israel have had great success this year targeting four areas on its RFS 2012 project, these included Beach Cricket and Night Cricket. The main aim of the project was to create awareness amongst the general Israeli public that cricket exists in Israel and is a fun sport to participate in. Beach cricket took a few attempts to pull off successfully which in the end it did with people coming to join in and playing cricket in a format they never knew they could.

The Schools/Night Cricket was also a big success with this format of the game proving very popular amongst children and adults.

Due to the perfect climate and the 'beach' way of life, Israel opted to take cricket to the people onto the beaches in order to create awareness and attract new faces to the game. Through beach cricket, nearby schools and local clubs were used in order to create a feeder system into the various clubs youth system.

Cricket Development Officer, Herschel Gutman is delight with the way beach cricket has kicked off, "Beach cricket has created awareness amongst Israeli's and the form we play on the beach is quick and fun. Some people who see and play it for the first time have signed their children up at local clubs and have continued. It mixes cricket and the beach and as everyone is on the beach in summer it's the perfect stage for it," says Gutman.

The schools development project through night cricket has been an ongoing project for two years with 2012 marking the first time it had taken the format into schools into night cricket venue areas. This brings a new dimension to the game interacting with more participants who have limited time.

"Night cricket has enabled a much wider range of people to participate in a game that takes place in the evenings and lasts no longer than 90 minutes. For those that are pushed for time and can't commit to a full or even half day out on the weekend, this is the perfect format for them to still be involved. Due to the short of the games (16 overs per innings and the fact that everyone gets to bowl 2 overs and bat 4 overs), many more people are joining the night league," says Gutman.

Through these two initiatives more coverage was received and generally more recognition than before. Israeli's can now differentiate between hockey/golf/polo and cricket, so achieving this goal, is a great success. Looking forward to 2013 the ICA aim to continue to educate local club players, so that each individual youth club section can be able to grow in the right manner, making it sustainable with the limited resources available and ensuring youth officers are placed in the right environment.

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