Australian cricket could be suffering from a ‘missing generation’ of children returning to play after first-time attendance at youth programs fell by 15,000 last season due to the coronavirus pandemic.
As club players have returned in large numbers following the Covid lockdowns, Cricket Australia’s annual survey has revealed a worrying drop in the number of children aged 12 and under trying cricket over the Australian summer 2021-22.
“It has created a challenge to ensure there is not a missing generation and increased participation among 5-12 year olds is a key part of the Australian cricket strategy which will soon be released,” said Wednesday. the governing body.
James Allsopp, who heads the community arm of Cricket Australia, told reporters cricket was a difficult sport to play if “you haven’t developed the fundamental motor skills at a young age”.
“And we have very strong data that shows that if you haven’t played cricket and learned the skills of the game before the age of 12, you’re less likely to play cricket as a teenager or a teenager. ‘adulthood.
“Some of the things we do, and what we build into the strategy, are designed to make sure we can turn the tide so we don’t miss a generation of new entrants, we’re just missing a year,” he said. he added.
“This is the problem we are determined to solve over the next 12 months.”
Despite a drop in the number of newbies getting into cricket, total registered attendance rose year-on-year by 11% to 598,931, although this was still 16% below the figures before Covid.
The increase in the number of women playing the game continued with registered female participation jumping by 12,000 year-on-year to 71,300.
© Agence France-Presse