Alexander Klatt-Currie steps up to bat at the cricket pitch in Beacon Hill as Taylor Bigrigg awaits catching the ball. The youths are using Kanga's softer

Cricket league seeks young blood

The tradition of Victoria's oldest recorded sport continues with Saturday morning cricket school this summer

The city’s top cricketers aren’t from here, they moved here. And maybe it will always be that way. But it’s not stopping John Wenman and company from the Victoria and District Cricket Association from believing the Lower Island can once again rise to a competitive level equal or better than the B.C. Mainland Cricket League.

“It was about 20 to 25 year ago that our clubs could rival the Mainland,” Wenman said.

The difference is that many of the better cricket players have immigrated to B.C., and there are plenty more ex-pat players in the Vancouver area than in Victoria.

Still, Wenman finds it odd the top teams are not better, because Greater Victoria has more cricket teams than ever. Which is where Wenman comes in.

Now 69, the retired teacher from Stelly’s secondary learned the game here, where he was born and raised. His former team, the University School Incogs, is celebrating its 100th season this year.

Wenman long ago shifted to recruiting and teaching, and is behind the league’s Saturday morning cricket school at St. Michaels University School. The program begins on June 2, for kids aged eight to 14, and runs until the last Saturday in August. Seminars last two hours and range from cricket introduction for newbies to development for return players. Younger students use softer equipment until they’re a little older, or have got the hang of the game.

By 14, some players are ready to join the Colts, a designated youth team playing in the less competitive mid-week league.

“Through the summer program we’ve put through quite a few players to the Colts, and have seen players move from the Colts into the more competitive weekend league,” Wenman said.

To register contact Wenman at 250-598-5477, or jawenman@telus.net.

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