Could we be seeing the introduction of a new sport in the Western Desert? Well, this may be the case as cricket was massively received through a recent visit by West Australian Cricket Association (WACA) Development Officers – Samantha Devine and Michael Russell.
As part of the Department of Sport and Recreation’s (DSR) Multisport Project, Sam and Michael accompanied Ngurra Kujungka staff – Dan Barnes and Ebony Humble to deliver cricket clinics to remote indigenous communities – Nullagine and Warralong and also the town of Marble Bar.
The objective of the four day tour was to introduce a new sport activity to the Western Desert communities and also provide Ngurra Kujungka Community Recreation Officers, local volunteer and community school teacher’s basic training and education on how to deliver cricket as part of the community and school sport program to increase the participation in health, sport and recreation activity.
Across the four days, clinics were delivered before, during and after school in each community. Before and after school activity involved game based fun activities such as your normal game of cricket with all participants rotating through to experience the skills of batting, bowling and fielding along with alternative games of ‘Continuous cricket’ and ‘Diamond cricket’.
During school activity was more structured. Three classes at each school participated in skill teaching activities covering the vital cricket skills of throwing, catching, batting and bowling. In delivering the skill teaching Sam and Michael always managed to continuously keep it entertaining as all skill teaching was delivered in a ‘fun game’, extremely popular activities such as ‘Rapid Fire’ and ‘Ready, Aim, Fire’ provided great engagement for participants learning and developing the basic skills of the game.
Importantly, the tour provided the ideal opportunity for Ngurra Kujungka Community Recreation Officers to participate and attain a ‘basic’ accreditation in cricket coaching. Nullagine Community Recreation Officers – Shaun Peterson and Annabel Landy assisted in the delivery of the program in both Nullagine and Marble Bar. This involved working closely with Sam and Michael in the delivery of each activity and participating in an ‘online’ short course.
‘The kids love cricket, it would be great to get the WACA up again to deliver to the other communities and perhaps look at cricket becoming part of the Western Desert League for the kids’
Annabel Landy – Ngurra Kujungka Commuity Recreation Officer, Nullagine
The training Shaun and Annabel have obtained has now provided them with the ability to deliver further cricket programs in Nullagine whilst additionally presenting the opportunity of up skilling Recreation Officers from other communities.
The WACA were also extremely generous in providing each community with cricket equipment along with lesson plans to also enable teachers and volunteers to deliver cricket in the community.