Prince Alfred College hosted 65 guests from the cricketing community on Saturday evening, including past and present players, families, sponsors and representatives from the Royal Society for the Blind, with Blind Cricket SA President Eugene Negruk boasting the organisation’s achievements over the past five decades.
“Reaching a 50-year anniversary is a truly great achievement and cannot happen without significant contributions from many people, beginning with the club founders in 1968 who put together a team and a program of matches from scratch,” said Negruk, who has been President since 2014.
“Our committees have worked tirelessly to ensure that our teams, club and State have the best chance of being competitive and to create an environment that people want to be a part of,” Negruk said.
The first two years following the formation of Blind Cricket SA in 1968, consisted of local matches among the blind and vision impaired community.
In the 1970-71 season, the club went on to enter the first South Australian team into the National Championships (now named the National Inclusion Cricket Championships or NCIC) and has managed to field a team at State level in 23 of the 27 Championships since.
The South Australian Blind and Vision Impaired Team achieved the ultimate goal in 2015 where, for the first time, they took home the title of National Champions.
Negruk said the blind cricket setup has given those with a vision impairment the opportunity to seek acceptance and friendship within a fun team environment.
“One of the most positive aspects of cricket is the friendship and comradery one can experience through playing,” Negruk said.
SACA’s Development Academy, established in 2017, works to further enhance the experience of State players with a disability, by offering world-class training facilities at Adelaide Oval, as well as access to physiotherapy, nutrition and coaching.
For more information about blind cricket, contact SACA Diversity and Inclusion Officer Amy Wiseman on (08) 8300 3296 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.