By Nick Creely
Cricket Victoria (CV) has unveiled its new player pathway model, which is aimed at providing emerging male and female cricketers across the state more opportunities to showcase their talent.
CV released its document last week detailing the pathway forward for developing future Australian and First-Class players, which is also ensuring cricketers are building lifelong connection with the game.
With junior pathway cricket severely impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic last season, the updated model has been well received around cricketing circles.
Cricket Victoria’s high performance manager Dean Russ said that the new model was aimed to developing more national and first-class players.
“The formation of this player pathway model has involved wide stakeholder consultation, extensive planning and has been backed by world leading talent development research,” he said.
“The pathway celebrates the great work our associations and Premier Cricket are doing and looks to nurture players, regardless of where they live, as they progress through the various phases.
“We want to produce national and First-Class cricketers and we don’t shy away from that. But we also want to produce well rounded senior cricketers who can give back to their clubs and help bring through the next generation of cricketers.”
CV’s cricketer’s pathway will transition through three different phases in their journey: ‘Be Exposed’, ‘Be Challenged’, and ‘Be Prepared’.
For emerging male cricketers, their first foray into representative cricket in the ‘Be Exposed’ phase will occur at under 14 and under 15 level through the Victorian Metropolitan Cricket Union’s (VMCU) Russell Allan Shield, the VSDCA’s JG Craig Shield and the Victorian Country Week for regional players.
At under 16 level, male players will advanced to the Youth Premier League in the ‘Be Challenged’ phase, with the program to be overseen by CV’s coaching and talent specialists, with the potential for further opportunities in the under 17 Emerging Players Program.
The male phase will end with ‘Be Prepared’, which will see the official return of the Dowling Shield with under 17 players linking with a Premier Club. This is closely aligned with the under 19 Emerging Players Program.
Female cricketers will follow a similar pathway to that of the males, with opportunities opening up at under 14 level through the VMCU’s Julie Savage Shield and Junior Country Week.
The Youth Premier League will be open to under 15 players and will closely align with the under 16 Female Emerging Players program. The final step will see an under 18 Premier Competition with players to link with Premier clubs.
More information can be found at cricketvictoria.com.au