Future Cricket Stars on show

The talents of cricket stars of the future are on view in Benoni and across Ekurhuleni this week as the Eastern Junior Club Cricket Association stage their annual EJCCA Carnival City Cricket Festival.

Apart from attracting some of the best young players from the region, there are a number of teams from neighbouring countries taking part in an event that Eastern Cricket’s director of club cricket Mark Kingham describes as “one of the cornerstones of cricket development in Southern Africa”.

Kingham emphasised that without the support of Carnival City Brakpan, Afrisun Sun East Rand Community Trust, Impala Platinum, Tempest Car Hire, ABI and the Ekurhuleni Metro Council, this “prestigious event” would not happen.

“We thank our valued and loyal sponsors for their belief in our vision,” he said.

This year is the first time in the history of the EJCCA that all three festivals are being held at the same time, with a total of 20 teams participating.

The Under-17 Festival is taking place at Benoni’s Willowmoore Park, the Under-15 Festival at United (Brakpan) and Actonville (Benoni) cricket clubs, and the Under-13 Festival at Springs Old Boys CC and Benoni Northerns.

According to Kingham, the festival has grown in status since its inception eight years ago and has become a prestigious event in South Africa, winning many accolades from Cricket SA and the Africa Cricket Association.

Apart from the various Easterns age-group teams from u-12 through to u-17 competing, national junior teams from Namibia, Zimbabwe, Swaziland and Botswana are also taking part.

“The Eastern Junior Club Cricket Association strives to be an organisation of integrity providing competitive cricket at all levels to players from all sectors of our community in a professional and organised manner, developing cricketing skills, enhancing social integration and cultural understanding of all those participating or involved under its administration,” explained Kingham.

“We are therefore extremely proud of how the EJCCA Carnival City Cricket Festival has grown over the years.”

Group matches take place throughout the week, with the main matches taking place at all the venues on Saturday and the T20 finals being played at Willowmoore, the headquarters of Eastern Cricket, on Sunday.

Benoni City Times2 July 2012