Special festival of cricket at Whiston Parish Church CC pushes the boundaries

Brady Saunders, SEND development officer for the YCB, with the Abbey School teamBrady Saunders, SEND development officer for the YCB, with the Abbey School team
Brady Saunders, SEND development officer for the YCB, with the Abbey School team
THERE were no losers, only winners, at a softball cricket festival for kids with disabilities.

Scores of pupils descended upon Whiston Parish Church CC for the South Yorkshire Schools Disability Festival on a day blessed by fine weather.

Abbey School, from Kimberworth, and Newman School, from Whiston, were among the eight taking part in the day organised by the Yorkshire Cricket Board.

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All had received 12 hours of free coaching from the YCB in both inclusive softball cricket and table cricket supported by The Lords Taverners charity.

Abbey School in action. Photos by Kerrie BeddowsAbbey School in action. Photos by Kerrie Beddows
Abbey School in action. Photos by Kerrie Beddows

“We are aiming to make cricket the most inclusive sport in the UK and events like this prove it,” said Brady Saunders, SEND development officer for the YCB.

"The pupils all had a fab time, smiles were constantly on their faces and they all displayed team spirit and sportsmanship of the highest calibre.

“As for the two Rotherham schools, they performed admirably. Abbey finished third and Newman fourth and both displayed great skill in batting, fielding and bowling.”

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Whiston PC hosted the event thanks to its status as an an ECB Disability Champion Club.

Newman School actionNewman School action
Newman School action

The club’s junior section lead, Doug Manning, said: “This was our first partnership with Brady and SEND schools but what a brilliant day.

"We weren’t quite sure what to expect but the kids soon put us at ease.

"Their love of cricket and the sheer love of playing competitive games was an absolute joy to see

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“Everyone involved from WPCCC had a fabulous time and can’t wait for the next festival.”

Whiston applied for Disability Cricket Champion status because of the facilities at its home at Church Fields and its willingness to accommodate those with special educational needs and disabilities.

It is supporting a growing arm of the game, with Brady alone going into nearly 40 schools already this year to deliver sessions.

He added: “I aim to grow this tournament next year and a massive thanks to Whiston Parish Church CC for hosting and being a fantastic example of an ECB champion club.”

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