Two north London clubs go head-to-head to get most kids playing cricket

Local children play on Highgate CC's pitch (pic: Michael Clarke/Highgate CC)

Local children play on Highgate CC's pitch (pic: Michael Clarke/Highgate CC) - Credit: Archant

Johan de Silva of Highgate CC and South Hampstead CC’s Gail Hepburn have a friendly competition taking place this summer

Highgate Cricket Club and South Hampstead Cricket Club will go head-to-head this summer in a different type of battle to usual.

The two local sides can boast two of the biggest All Stars Cricket programmes in north London after putting plenty of work into the fairly new scheme recently.

As a result, this year they have both decided to go up against each other to see who can get the most kids signed up this summer in a bit of friendly local competition.

All Stars Cricket, run by the English Cricket Board (ECB), is a nationwide programme aimed at five-to-eight-year-olds to give them their first great experience of cricket.

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The activity and game-based programme, starting up again in May, is suitable for all skill levels and provides children with the foundations to begin a life-long love of physical activity and cricket, while making friends in a safe and enjoyable environment.

Gail Hepburn, All Stars Lead Activator for South Hampstead, said: “We had a pitch full of kids enjoying cricket every Friday last summer, and I know we can do even better.

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“Johan (de Silva) had a head-start last year, but this year I’m better prepared and I’m ahead with nearly 30 registrations, so I’m intending to leave him in the dust.”

Highgate’s very own All Stars Lead Activator, de Silva, added: “Highgate CC was chosen by the ECB to be a case study in how to run All Stars last year – that’s how successful it was.

“It was so popular we had to have sessions on Saturday and Sunday mornings.

“Gail may have the first move this year, but I’ve got a few tricks planned to make sure in the end I’ll get more registrations.”

Hepburn and de Silva know each other through women’s cricket with de Silva coaching the team Hepburn plays for.

This won’t get in the way of their friendly competition, however, with the future of kids cricket in the local area on the line.

Given how successful both were with regard to All Stars Cricket in 2018, this added motive can only be a positive.

To support Hepburn and South Hampstead, click here or to support de Silva and Highgate, click here.

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