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Lydia Greenway: Former England international launches Girls Cricket Club to encourage growth of female participation

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Girls Cricket Club launches ahead of Women’s Big Cricket Month in June; Lydia Greenway said: “We want girls to feel a sense of belonging within cricket and to promote the message that cricket is equally as much female as it is male”

Lydia Greenway said the programme's ethos is 'progression, not perfection'

Lydia Greenway said the programme’s ethos is ‘progression, not perfection’

Former England cricketer Lydia Greenway has launched the Girls Cricket Club, a platform to accelerate the growth of female cricket around the world.

Monday’s announcement comes ahead of next month’s Women’s Big Cricket Month, an ECB initiative to give more women and girls the opportunity to experience cricket, and the inaugural Hundred tournament in July which will see men’s and women’s competitions run concurrently.

In a press release issued on Monday, the Girls Cricket Club says it “aims to connect female cricketers around the world, serve as an independent voice for girls and women within cricket and to provide female-specific resources to girls and women of all ages and backgrounds”.

Having made 225 appearances for England, including a World T20 and World Cup victory in 2009 and five Ashes series, Greenway was among the first to pioneer professional cricket for women after earning a central contract with the ECB in 2014.

The 13-year veteran says she wants to help reach girls both with a passion for cricket as well as those who may not otherwise be exposed to the game, and provide both with equal opportunities to take part.

Greenway has recruited 16 influential women in cricket to join the Girls Cricket Club advisory board Greenway has recruited 16 influential women in cricket to join the Girls Cricket Club advisory board

“Ultimately we want girls to feel a sense of belonging within cricket and to promote the message that cricket is equally as much female as it is male,” Greenway said.

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“We’re creating opportunities for girls of all backgrounds to fall in love with the game and to benefit from sport – whether that’s going on to play at the highest level or to make amazing friends, develop confidence, leadership skills and find a community.

“Our ethos is progression, not perfection and that applies both on and off the pitch. It’s about harnessing the power of sport to achieve in all aspects of life.”

Girls Cricket Club advisory board

Hannah Thompson, Roberta Moretti Avery, Emily Drumm, Ciara Metcalfe, Jenny Gunn, Jo Hackett, Tash Farrant, Carla Rudd, Hannah Jelfs, Jenna Searls, Sangy Thievendra, Fran Hide, Sue Strachan, Emily Starr, Kristy Miall, Sheromie Brewster

Greenway has also recruited 16 influential women in cricket to join the Girls Cricket Club advisory board, including international players, coaches and officials from the UK, Ireland, New Zealand and Brazil.

“Advocacy is an important pillar for us,” Greenway said.

“While we’ve come a long way and are seeing some amazing initiatives and opportunities within the women’s game, there is still a way to go reach equality within our sport.

“We’re lucky to have Advisory Board members from all facets of the game who will be our eyes and ears and lead us on our mission.”

The Girls Cricket Club supports the ICC’s 100% Cricket campaign to encourage one million girls to take up cricket in the year ending 2021, and the ECB’s £20m action plan to make cricket a gender-balanced sport as part of its Inspiring Generations strategy for 2020 to 2024.

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