The MCC Foundation will open nine new Hubs providing free coaching to state-educated 11-15 year olds in 2020, focusing on increasing opportunities in inner city areas and for girls.
Following a successful programme in 2019, where 1,900 young cricketers benefitted from ten weeks of coaching and are now playing for clubs across the country, the Foundation will fund new Hubs for both boys and girls in Birmingham, Leicester, Bristol, Sheffield, Leeds, Liverpool, and three girls-only Hubs in Northumberland, Durham and Cumbria.
It takes the total number of Hubs up to 54, with a target of increasing the percentage of girls in the system from 16% in 2019 to 30% in 2020.
The Hubs cater purely for state-educated young cricketers, who are not playing county cricket. Only 1% of state-educated teenagers regularly play cricket in the summer, and a new report from the social mobility foundation, the Sutton Trust, indicates that 43% of the England men’s and 35% of the England women’s team went to independent schools – compared to just 7% of the total population.
"Cricket should be a game for the many, not the few"
Abi Carter, Director of the MCC Foundation, said:
“There is a real dearth of cricket in the state secondary sector, often due to a lack of playing facilities and teachers confident in their ability to coach. Our Hubs are filling a major gap in provision, by providing excellent coaching and facilities to young people who may otherwise not have the opportunity to play regularly and fulfil their potential.
“Cricket should be a game for the many, not the few, and we are committed to targeting areas where we can make the greatest impact by catering for the greatest need. Our Hubs don’t just create better cricketers, they also have broader benefits around boosting young people’s confidence and resilience.”
Insight from the Foundation’s network of 50 Hubs in 2019 found:
- 96% of participants believe the Hub made them a better cricketer
- 73% of parents said their child’s overall personal confidence increased as a result of attending the Hub
- 87% of participants told us that attending the Hub increased their desire to keep playing cricket
- 19% went on to play representative cricket