Top-class junior cricket anticipated at the EJCCA carnival city cricket festival

Junior cricket teams from Namibia and Zimbabwe will join ten junior representative teams in one of South Africa’s premier cricket development events, the 7th annual EJCCA U15 & U17 Carnival City Cricket Festival. The festival will take place at the Sahara Park Willowmoore Cricket grounds in Benoni, United Cricket Club Brakpan and Springs Old Boys Cricket Club in Springs from 6-10 July.

According to Mark Kingham, Chairman of the Eastern Junior Club Cricket Association (EJCCA), the festival not only gives cricket fans an unique opportunity to see top national and provincial  junior players in action, but also to enjoy the game being played as originally intended, “In good Spirit”.

“Our mission is to provide junior cricketers from all sectors of the community with an event that allows them to develop and play cricket at the highest level,” Mark says. “There can be no doubt that the festival has a positive impact on improving the standard of cricket at junior level, and in past years a number of players have successfully made the leap to the senior ranks at provincial and senior level.”

However, Mark believes that part of this success is due to the emphasis on playing the game in good spirit during the festival. “Our goals of cricket development, social integration, cultural understanding, life skills and improving relations with stakeholders is a winning recipe, and since its inception in 2005 the festival has experienced phenomenal growth.”

The festival rewards those players who display proper cricket etiquette and sportsmanship. The top player award is the Sportsmanship Award for outstanding display of cricket etiquette, and can be won by any player regardless of his skills or performance.  The Festival Team award has the same goal, and is awarded to the team that displays the highest level of discipline, adherence to the proper dress code, general manners and encouragement on the field of play.

Sponsor Sandy Hattingh, CEO of The Afrisun Trust said “We and Carnival City are proud to be associated with the festival, and to be playing a very relevant role in cricket development.  We are especially delighted to be bringing cricket to our townships and identifying talent in young players. We wish all the participating teams well through the festival.”

Following on the heels of the EJCCA U13 festival held from 15-19 June, the EJCCA U15 & U17 Carnival City Cricket Festival will this year feature junior representative teams from KwaZulu-Natal, Griqualand West, North West and Northern’s, in addition to the four national teams from Namibia, Zimbabwe and teams from EJCCA.

The participation by teams from Botswana, Kenya, Lesotho, Mozambique, Namibia, Swaziland, Zambia and Zimbabwe in previous years shows that the EJCCA Carnival City Cricket Festival is becoming a cornerstone of cricket development in the southern Africa region, and it has won accolades from cricketing authorities such as Cricket South Africa, Africa Cricket Association, and the International Cricket Council (Africa).

The Eastern Junior Club Cricket Association has also benefitted from the exposure, as is borne out by the fact that last year five of its players were selected for various junior national and 1st class teams.

For more information, please contact Mark Kingham at Eastern Cricket – 082-458-7217 / mkingham@telkomsa.net