The Lord’s Taverners Luton Wicketz project hosted nearly 150 youngsters who took part in a mini world cup tournament.
The cricket charity is an official ‘Cricket 4 Good Partner’ at the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup this summer, with the partners aiming to diversify the game and engage children.
Last week, the ICC Cricket World Cup Trophy, cricketer Sam Billings and former England fast bowler Devon Malcolm paid a special visit to the mini tournament at Putteridge High School.
Speaking at the event, England international and Lord’s Taverners ambassador Sam Billings said: “Throughout the country, the Lord’s Taverners cricket programmes make a huge difference to the lives of thousands of disadvantaged and disabled youngsters and being named as a Cricket 4 Good partner will help showcase the fantastic work of the charity.
“Like millions of cricket fans across the world, the Wicketz participants in Luton can’t wait for what promises to be a fantastic tournament to start.”
In September 2018, the ICC and England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) announced an ambitious plan to engage 1 million 5-12-year-olds through the Cricket World Cup and use the tournament as a platform to grow and diversify the game across England and Wales.
Part of this plan see’s the ICC Cricket World Cup partner with leading cricketing organisations to ensure that the whole cricket family helps to deliver a positive legacy.
Commenting on the partnership, Steve Elworthy, CWC19 Managing Director, said: “The ICC Cricket World Cup is a once in a generation opportunity for us to grow and diversify the game, and achieving this is something we are deeply passionate about.”
The launch event at Putteridge High School was organized by Amran Malik, of the Lord’s Taverners’ Cricket East initiative, which runs projects aimed at engaging young people in the sport.
As well as some intense competition between schools, the young people took part in civic participation workshops in which they worked with team-mates to provide solutions to issues such as knife crime and homelessness.
“This was a wonderful opportunity for the young people of the town,” said Amran. “Teams came from all over Luton to play cricket but also take part in some important discussions about issues that affect them.
“We were really pleased to see how young people interacted on the day.”
The Lord’s Taverners is the leading youth cricket and disability sports charity in the UK, delivering a number of national programmes including Table Cricket, Super 1s and Wicketz.
Lord’s Taverners CEO, Paul Robin added: “Throughout the country, our programmes are breaking down barriers and empowering young people to fulfil their potential and build crucial life skills - and there is no better example than our Luton Wicketz project to demonstrate how we are uniting communities across the country.
“We’re delighted to be named as a Cricket 4 Good Partner which will allow our participants across the country to play their part in the tournament that will unite communities.”