Youth Cricket Homepage
Cornwall Youth Cricket Festival
The week's schedule can be downloaded here
Twenty-nine years ago the idea of a week-long club youth cricket event was hatched by Mark Mitchell and an associate, Peter Hickes, and a Committee was formed. It soon became a six day tournament, often featuring some 500-600 young cricketers aged from around 7 to 17. Up to 5 pitches have been used, at Penryn School (now a Sports College), St Gluvias Cricket Club, Penryn Rugby Club, Falmouth CC, Wendron CC and Mabe. Matches begin at 9.30 am and continue until around 8.30 pm. For many years, Lord’s Taverners’ bags of cricket equipment were the main prize for the winning teams.
The Festival adopted its Cornwall title early on, to reflect its independence, though it has remained traditionally Penryn-based and the support of St Gluvias Cricket Club has been invaluable. Volunteers are on hand all week to keep the pitches running and ensure that there is a continuous supply of food and drink.
The style of cricket is fast, but encompassing all of the skills and tactics of the full game. Scoring rates, mirroring those in the professional game, have rocketed over the years. In 1987 the use of an 80-ball innings as the mainstay of the competition perhaps seemed a dangerous gamble and might have produced around 60 to 80 runs, but to score 100 in 2016 guarantees you no more than a competitive total.
Each team consists of 8 players. The two original tournaments, Under 13 and Under 15, are played over 10 eight-ball overs per side, with only 5 overs for the Under 17’s, which is an exciting evening event. Each team plays on a qualifying day, then most get the chance to return for a Finals Day. The Under 11 soft ball tournament takes place in its entirety on the first day and it is a joy to see up to five games being played simultaneously on the St Gluvias ground. As many as 80 teams take part in one Festival, though numbers are now around 50, mainly from within Cornwall, but some from as far as Birmingham and London. The Under 13 competition reached a height of 18 entries in 1998 & 2010 and has always been well supported, but the Under 15s has traditionally been the main event and this reaches a final on the Friday evening.