Nationally, cricket has seen a seven per cent increase in female participation, while SA has been boosted by a massive 21.2 per cent, with women and girls now making up almost a third of total cricket participants in the State.
The total number of girls’ teams in community competitions in SA grew from 124 in 2017-18 to 159 in 2018-19 across both clubs and schools, which is more than a 28 per cent increase.
More than ever before students are getting the opportunity to be introduced to cricket in the school yard and it is the first time the school participant total has exceeded the 100,000 mark in SA, with over 25,000 more boys and girls taking part in cricket than the previous year.
Junior indoor cricket has also seen a spike in participation, with over 70% more boys and girls enjoying the indoor game.
Vanessa Walker, SACA Field Force Manager, Community Cricket said: “It’s a priority across all aspects of our business to make cricket South Australia’s favourite sport, and the numbers really show.
“Female participation is at an all-time high in South Australia and once again, SACA has seen a significant rise in the female space. This is a result of both new and established community clubs, schools and volunteers working hard to meet the demand for girls' development and playing opportunities.
“SACA is committed to supporting this growth and working across all sectors of cricket to ensure welcoming and positive participation experiences for all current and new players.
“We’re also very pleased to play a large part in introducing children across our State to sport at a young age through our school cricket programs as we know a strong culture of cricket in schools is a great foundation for the future generation of players”
Club participation declined nationally overall by 3.6 per cent in male competitions this season, which appears to be a global trend for organised sport in developed countries.
Acknowledging the critically important role that clubs play in local communities, Australian Cricket continues to prioritise investment in grassroots cricket to make participation options more enjoyable, accessible and to make volunteering easier.
This involves a $300 million commitment to community cricket from 2017-2022 by Cricket Australia and State and Territory Associations, which is a $100 million increase on the previous five-year period.
SACA is committed to investing time and resources into club cricket across the State, including supporting clubs through the Australian Cricket Infrastructure Fund, the Grassroots Football, Cricket and Netball Facility Program and initiatives such as the Vodafone Helmet Program and Cricket Connects.
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