Cricketers go back to school to teach the right spirit

Children around the country celebrated the end of term last week with some special cricketing visitors. Former Yorkshire captain and England cricketer Anthony McGrath surprised children in Newhall Primary School, Bradford with a special visit and Gloucestershire cricket Ian Saxelby popped into Coniston Primary School near Bristol.

During the visit, both Ian and Anthony took part in MCC Spirit of Cricket Assemblies with the children. Using a video-based MCC Spirit of Cricket assembly, created as part of a partnership with Chance to Shine, children discussed the meaning of ‘rivalry’. The children learnt about respecting opposition, team-mates and officials, whilst being encouraged to play hard but fair.

After the assembly in Bradford, children took to the school playground for a coaching session, followed by a game with Anthony McGrath. Anthony touched on all aspects of the game during the coaching clinic, including bowling, batting and fielding.

Summing up his visit Ian said, “It’s been great. The kids got really involved and always wanted to put their hands up during the assembly, which is brilliant. It shows that kids do get involved with the game, a few lads here play cricket and it’s brilliant for the area.”

“Cricket is a great game as people become captains and leaders, learn teamwork and the discipline of training day in day out. There are plenty of life skills to be learnt around people playing sport.”

In 2013, around 400,000 children in 4,000 ‘Chance to Shine’ schools will be introduced to the key MCC Spirit of Cricket messages enshrined in the Laws of the game, as a result of the MCC/Chance to Shine partnership. This will be done by communicating the MCC Spirit of Cricket message to children within schools through the special assemblies and organising intra school competitions.

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