The benefits of their inaugural primary schools grant are already being enjoyed, and Orange District Junior Cricket Association president Dave Cumming is hoping that will encourage more schools to apply for this summer’s second edition.
While Canobolas Public has had a new, synthetic wicket put in, Orange Public’s new nets were officially opened on Friday last week too.
The upgrade was spurred by the primary schools grant with some financial help from Orange City Cricket Club as well.
“It’s fantastic to see schools already enjoying the benefits, it’s all about participation and growing the game,” Cumming said.
“If we can help get school kids playing more cricket, even just at lunch time, that will translate into playing on the weekends.
“So we are pushing a little bit harder to get more schools involved and obviously we’re hoping to see more schools apply for this year’s, with $5,000 more to be divided up.
“The nominations are starting to come through, which is great.”
OPS boys’ and girls’ coach Deb Smith thanked both the ODJCA and Orange City, and said she’s looking forward to seeing the positive impact the upgrade has on cricket at the school.
“We’re all very excited to have the new nets in, it was a joint venture from the ODJCA, Orange City Cricket Club and Orange Public,” Smith said.
“It was spurred by the primary schools grant and it will definitely help with our school teams, especially our girls’ team.
“We had the Sydney Thunder clinic here and we’ve just run another clinic. What I see now is girls out playing in the playground, and I’ve never really seen that before so that’s really great.
“We also just had teams at the T20 Blast School Cup Day at Jack Brabham and it was great to see the skills they’ve learned being put into practice, particularly the fact all of them bowled overarm, there was no underarm bowling at all.
“We actually had a team win the day too, which was really pleasing too.”
Orange City president Nick Cooper was also on hand at the opening, and he said it was “no-brainer” for his club to invest in the project.
“We obviously have a heap of kids coming from OPS, a lot of our juniors are OPS boys and girls, it’s been a bit of nursery for us so it was a no-brainer to help out with this,” he said.
“We’re always keen to help promote junior cricket.”
Applications remain open for this summer’s grant, applicants will be required to identify the type of project for which they are applying and a school may apply for more than one project, and they can find nomination forms here.
Applications must be returned by September 21 to ODJCApresident.com.au, or via post to PO Box 1930, NSW, 2800.