Fueled as it was by ever
increasing numbers of
players and registration and
continued expressed interest
throughout the season for playing
opportunities, Nova Scotia’s cricket
has experienced steady growth
during the past year. Interest in
cricket within the province was also buoyed by Team Nova Scotia’s
highly commendable performances in all the Inter-Provincial
Tournaments at which it participated.
The Province’s outstanding on-field performances were undoubtedly,
positively boosted by the Nova Scotia Cricket Association’s (NSCA)
engagement of and investment in a dedicated Coach, The NSCA’s
establishment of a High Performance Program which provided year
round training and fitness focused improvement for the province’s
elite players has also taken their respective performances to a
higher level.
During 2019 NSCA was also engaged in foundational Club
structure work, undertaking lots of planning and co-ordination
activities towards moving the province’s cricket even further
ahead. NSCA’s hopes are that its engagement in such activities
will have a cascading effect on growth throughout the province
and in particular for its Junior cricket programs. The improved,
much healthier state of its finances has also allowed NSCA the
luxury of having more money to buffer its reinforced focus on
increased development.
2019 witnessed competition among four Clubs in two Divisions
of the Halifax Cricket League. Over 150 players participated in
matches during the Season with approximately 70-100 of those
having registered in one month, resulting in a 50 player waitlist.
East Coast Cricket Club were the Division 1 Champions, while
the Halifax Titan Club claimed the Division 2 honors. The Bhan-
Deonarine Cup was won by the East Coast Cricket Club. Team
Nova Scotia emerged as victors of the Maritime Trophy and were
also the Runners Up for the Eastern T20 Championships.
NSCA also continued its provision of year round training for a
dedicated High Performance Development squad. 28 Players
identified from 2018 HCL Season, along with those returning from
the East T20 Championships participated in the Daksh Talwar led
first session last January. A total of 24 sessions were held at 360
Fit, SMU Gym, Sexton and the Studley Dalhousie Campus, alongwith outdoor sessions at Ridgecliife. The sessions
focused on fitness, fielding and batting/bowling skills.
The Fitness sessions also included Yo-Yo, push ups
and planks tests along with sit ups challenges. These
replaced the previously administered Beep tests. The
High Performance Squad sessions also featured a
lot of mental conditioning with discussions about
improving fitness, flexibility and self identification, as
well as the utilization of smart goal setting Attendance
was low at the start but picked up as the Squad was
reduced to 18 participants before the commencement
of the outdoor season.
14-15 all-year sessions were also hosted for the
Province’s Junior cricketers. A successfully hosted
indoor Winter League paid obvious dividends
by keeping players active during the off-season.
Similarly the NSCA’s establishment of a Player Success
Committee proved successful in addressing most of
the immediately obvious areas of improvement in
participation. Such improvements and the resulting
increased participation as was reflected by the
growing numbers has helped Nova Scotia to move
that much closer to its targeted club structure. During
the year, NSCA also hosted 3 Open House community
events to create local awareness and as a means of
raising funds for further cricket development.
NSCA’s grassroots cricket development activities
continued with several sessions being hosted at HRM
Schools. An outdoor session for kids was also held
on Canada Day and a Scotiabank Fundraiser hosted
during the HCL Finals.
NSCA’s engagement in its outlined initiatives and
activities was made possible through the generous
financial support it received from both Cricket
Canada as well as Sport Nova Scotia. This support
allowed NSCA to provide increased funding for local
coaching and development activities. Significantly
large sponsorships and donations that were received
from Scotiabank as well as community members
boosted the NSCA’s fund raising activities which also
included some community events, for a very successful
combined formula. The NSCA also recorded a 100%
success rate on its funding applications to local
and provincial bodies, the net result of which was
a positive bank balance with more financial buffers
available for next year.
A more consistent availability of funding for further
grassroots development initiatives is one of the many
challenges the NSCA has identified as needing to
addressed during the coming year. To date funding
has been sporadic with sponsorship acquisitions
being too heavily dependent on player connections. The
Kids Program which the NSCA has done an excellent job
of running successfully, with the help of local bodies and
dedicated volunteers, to get kids interested in cricket is
one of many initiatives that would benefit from far more
consistent funding. Due to the lack funding and options for
more volunteers, the Program has suffered from having a
limited follow-up mechanism to continue the development
of participating kids.
In its efforts to increase female participation, the NSCA
has also continued to struggle finding women interested
in playing cricket. Having a larger pool of certified umpires
for officiating and coaching is also an area of required
improvement as is the development of cricket outside of
Halifax. Most efforts are still concentrated in the city only.
The continuation of efforts to maintain a healthy balance
between increased opportunities for players as against
promoting healthy competition is also a challenge the
NSCA will seek to address during the coming year.
As it seeks to overcome its identified challenges the NSCA
has identified several areas of further required assistance
from Cricket Canada. Foremost among these is the dire need
for a new ground, as well as an upgrade to the existing
pitch. The assistance of both Cricket Canada and local
authorities will be required to help raise the funds that will
be necessary to cover the cost for the new pitch upgrade.
The NSCA’s efforts to acquire more certified coaches and
umpires, as well as increased opportunities for specialized
trainings are other areas that will be in need of Cricket
Canada’s continuing support. Towards this end the NSCA has
also requested Cricket Canada’s consideration of increased
participation and opportunity from NS and Atlantic
Canada at the national level in the form of either a Board
Of Directors or Director-At-Large position to be a part of its
functioning Committees. This would allow Cricket Canada
to better understand the unique set of circumstances that
pertain to the efforts of the Atlantic Provinces in growing
the sport of cricket!

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