The ECB and youth cricket and disability sport charity the Lord’s Taverners have announced a ‘game changing’ £2m partnership.
The pair will make ‘life-changing’ disability cricket accessible in every county in England and Wales as part of the investment, the biggest ever made into a disability cricket programme.
The partnership will see the Super 1s disability cricket programme launched in every county, and will improve the sustainability of table cricket – with the pair aiming to increase participation, inspire social change, and empower tens of thousands more young people to build life skills through the sport.
The Super 1s programme is delivered by the Lord’s Taverners in conjunction with county cricket boards, and gives young people living with a disability the chance to play regular, competitive cricket.
Participants play table cricket, which is an adapted version of cricket played on a table tennis table, and develops teamwork and social skills among players, while helping with coordination and cognitive skills.
The programme already reaches thousands of young people in 20 English and Welsh counties, as well as in Scotland. but this will increase to all 39 counties thanks to the collaboration between the UK’s leading youth disability sports charity and cricket’s governing body.
By the end of 2021, the charity along with the ECB, will aim to set up new programmes in Worcestershire, Northumberland, Devon, Wiltshire and an Eastern Counties project (in Bedfordshire, Hertfordshire, Cambridgeshire), while the pair aim to be active in every county by 2024.
“This partnership is a true game-changer for the Taverners,” said David Gower, President, the Lord’s Taverners, and former England Captain.
“This is the largest investment by a cricket board into a disability specific programme and to work with the ECB is an incredible honour. The charity’s work has proved life-changing for so many participants and we’re very excited about the opportunity to bring our work to young people in every county across the country.”
Nick Pryde, Director of Participation and Growth at ECB said: “We’re committed to making cricket as inclusive and diverse as possible and this partnership will be a big driving force towards that. Bringing the Super 1s to every county really will change lives. It’s a fantastic way to increase accessibility and show that cricket can be a game for everyone.”
The partnership will also fund the further development of table cricket which is currently played in 357 schools by over 8,800 young people across the country.