Cricket at Stoneygate
Cricket is played in the Summer term at Stoneygate on two afternoons per week, Tuesday and Thursday, in the Junior Section up to and including Year 4, and on three afternoons from Year 5 upwards.
Cricket coaching begins in Year 3, with organised group coaching sessions of the skills of batting, bowling and fielding using tennis balls, together with teaching of the basic rules and tactics.
Boys of Year 3 take part in "Kwik Cricket" matches against other schools, using a rubber orange ball, where opposition teams are carefully selected according to the skill levels and age groups. Year 3 constitute the Under-8’s, where we field A and B teams in order to give each child a chance to play organised team cricket.
Kwik cricket is continued in Year 4, again using the softer orange ball, and additional fixtures against other schools are arranged, with a similar timetable to Year 3. Year 4 constitute the Under 9’s, also in A and B teams.
When the boys get into Years 5 and 6 they continue to play matches against other schools in the Colts A, B and C teams. Colts A practise and play matches with a proper leather cricket ball, whilst the B and C teams graduate from the orange Kwik Cricket ball to the use of an Incrediball, and finally to a hard ball, with the appropriate equipment being used at each stage. Every opportunity is given to each boy to prove himself as a player, and towards the second half of the term, they settle into their regular places in the appropriate team.
Similarly, the boys of Years 7 and 8 are selected according to their playing ability into the 1st and 2nd XI teams. These teams practise and play with a hard ball and use the appropriate equipment. Once again, there is ample mobility between the teams as we give each boy the chance to prove himself.
Colours may be awarded to boys who show commitment, ability and team spirit at Colts and Senior levels. There is regular contact with the Leicestershire County Cricket Club, and their facilities are used for our winter coaching. We also have days in the summer, when Leicestershire Coaches and present county players coach our boys and take part in question and answer sessions at Stoneygate. We have connections with local cricket clubs, who let us use their pitches and facilities for matches and training. Every year we enter the U11 County Cup, which we have won on a number of occasions in recent years.
At Stoneygate we aim to instil in players a love of cricket at an early age, and to give a sound foundation of skills for their future progress. Former pupils have gone on to play at Senior school, club, and professional level. A few have also played in national teams at under-16, under-18 and under-19 level.