We take a look at a small University of Manchester women’s sports team with big ambitions
Women’s cricket is a sport that is currently on the rise, with England’s Women recently winning the ODI series against Sri Lanka and qualifying for the World Cup. There is plenty of cricket to watch, but why not give it a go yourself? Here at the University Cricket Club we always welcome new members of all abilities so it really doesn’t matter if you’re a county level spin bowler or you’ve never picked up a cricket bat in your life! We are a small club with around 15 members attending weekly sessions. Our club has a wide membership base with some people having club or county experience and some total beginners, with many of our players going on to play for local women’s teams after graduation. The most important thing is that everyone enjoys themselves!
Cricket is not just a summer sport and we compete in both indoor and outdoor BUCS competitions, and we have already completed the indoor tournaments for this academic year, celebrating a win against Leicester at Old Trafford in November. Our focus is more on club development than BUCS points so we also play short indoor games every weekend in the ICL and IPL leagues at the Armitage. These are much more relaxed games where we play against other students (and sometimes staff) to put into practice what we have learnt in training. This includes playing against the Sporticipate team on Sunday afternoons. If you haven’t heard about Sporticipate it is a great way to get involved with free sports at university and as the name suggests, it’s all about getting people participating in sports, especially if it’s something you’ve never played before.
We train once a week on Tuesdays 6pm-8pm at the Armitage in Fallowfield and the sessions usually involve some skills based exercises followed by a game or two. We have two great coaches on hand who come down every week to help us develop our cricketing skills and are always willing to help you achieve whatever it is you want to get out of the club. All equipment and protective kit is provided, the only thing you need is something comfortable to wear and yourself, we will provide the rest! We will be continuing indoor training until around Easter time when we move outdoors for the summer season — so no training outside in the snow! When this happens there will be another round of BUCS matches, outside this time, and all of our members are encouraged to give BUCS ago as it is a great way to get match experience.
Because we are a small club, we all get along really well and enjoy going to AU socials as well as our own events organised by our two social secs. This means that when it comes to training, everyone is very supportive and the relaxed atmosphere makes it much easier for beginners to learn new skills. We are intending to go on tour this year too, location to be confirmed, but we usually go away for a long weekend in the summer to another university city and try and squeeze a cricket match in amongst all the trips and socials we do. This is a brilliant way to round off a great year of cricket and meet club members from another university whilst having really good fun.
We are always looking to grow the club so if you think this might be for you, come along to one of our training sessions on Tuesday evenings or come along to the Sporticipate events on Sundays and give it a go! Alternatively you can find us on Facebook, follow us on Instagram, or get in touch with our Club Captain Emily at firstname.lastname@example.org.