Stay At Home Cricket

Today guest writer Tom Jones tell us about his lockdown cricket activities. There are some really good ideas here. I loved his drill for practicing against the short ball (see the video below). Moeen Ali please take note!  

It’s Mid March 2020. The UK Government announces that social gatherings of all kinds are banned for the foreseeable future. Lockdown commences on March 22nd with the message “stay at home, protect our NHS, save lives”.

Cricket – both professional and recreational – is cancelled. And suddenly a huge void appears in our summer.

At this point in time, as Chairman of Junior Cricket at Warrington Sports Club, I was busy with pre season practice sessions for the kids at Bridgewater HS and was preparing for the upcoming outdoor season. This all came to an abrupt halt. No more practices; no games; no start to the season. Nothing.

As a contingency I came up with the idea of #stayathomecricket – a series of games and activities we can all play at home. I posted these on my Facebook page. If the kids couldn’t go out to play cricket then I’d bring it to their homes through video instead.

In the first few days there was the inevitable toilet roll challenge (adapted for cricket), followed by a series of simple games that we played in our back garden (which is not the biggest).

I then set up a YouTube Channel to host all the videos. The plan was to create 28 videos (one a day for four weeks). So, much to the initial embarrassment of my sons, the Cricket Coach 365 channel was born.

The next step was to create a set of activity cards as a way of accompanying the videos. Within a few days the “Special Edition Stay at Home Cricket” activity cards were created: 28 cards to match the 28 videos. People can purchase these online here.

The whole package is available: online videos to look at the games in action accompanied by activity cards which provide suggested instructions on stetting the games up. We have even done some videos showing how the games can be adapted if you are really limited for space or have no equipment.

The main purpose of all this is to bring some fun into people’s homes during lockdown. It keeps people connected to the game and helps kids to stay active.

Now that March has moved on to June, the lockdown situation has eased somewhat but there is still no sign of any kind of recreational cricket. Meanwhile, the domestic professional game has been put on hold until at least August 1.

Consequently there’s still room for #StayAtHomeCricket. Indeed, it might help those missing their club or representative junior cricket to stay sane in these troubling times.

I hope to see as many youngsters as possible taking part. And I hope they’ll encourage their mates to do so too with some peer to peer online challenges. This will help everyone’s mental health and provide a degree of social interaction before things get back to normal.

So please subscribe to the Cricket Coach 365 You Tube Channel. Get involved and have some fun. Thanks.

Tom Jones


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