Grass Root cricket is the future of the game, feels Shane Warne

Shane Warne believes kids need to be encouraged to take up the game early © Getty Images

Sydney, Feb 18, 2013

Australian spin legend Shane Warne feels that there a need to have wonderful programs to keep young Australian kids interested and keen on cricket.

In his blog Shanewarne.com, he wrote about the need for school initiatives.

“With this in mind, I believe a new school initiative needs to be put in place, as, like many other concerned parents, I’m not sure that the current programs are good enough. We are lucky in Australia that Grass Roots Cricket is well supported by sponsorship, which gives us a chance,” he wrote.

“I believe up to the age of fourteen it’s about enjoyment and participation – all sport not just cricket.   After that, it’s about following your passion and becoming committed to becoming the best you can be if you want to pursue a sporting future.  It will never be easy, but with supportive and encouraging parents who are not trying to live their dreams through their son or daughter, (which thankfully I was lucky enough to have), and then they will stand a chance,” he added.

Warne felt that the key was to strike a balance between providing each and everyone with an opportunity while giving the best the attention they need.

He called his idea the ’30/30 School Cricket Program’ for kids upto 14 years of age and wrote the following.

“30/30″ School Cricket Program
– 30 overs each side / 10 min change over
– Every player must bowl 3 overs = 30
– Batters retire at 30
– 9am – 1pm should be the time at weekends so you still have plenty of family time.

From 15 and above, Warne felt that there will be a need to allow players to shine and develop their skills and mature as aspiring cricketers.

He suggested the following plan for kids above the age of 15 and aspire to play for Australia some day.

– 75 overs an innings each side, played over 2 Saturday’s
– Max of 15 overs per bowler
– Batters retire at 100
– 12pm – 6pm 3 x 1:50 min sessions
– 2 x 15 min breaks

Warne also advocated that these kids need a role model to look up. For that, he suggested all state players in Australia should visit schools every week to promote the game.