Cricket without Borders

By Vatapuia Maiava ,

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MEET THE TEAM Cricket without Borders team with Team Coach Bryce McGain

MEET THE TEAM Cricket without Borders team with Team Coach Bryce McGain

They are a team with a purpose and they have made their presence known.

Being one of four teams in Samoa for the I.C.C. Women’s East Asia Pacific Cricket World Cup Qualifier Tournament, Cricket Without Borders (C.W.B.) is not just you ordinary cricket team.

The team holds much more meaning in the bonds that hold them together.

Paying their own way to bat under the beautiful Samoan Sun, the team is enjoying their stay in beautiful Samoa.

One of the teams driving forces is to equally give girls of Australia a chance at cricket.

“Cricket without borders was started Ken Jacobs and I,” C.W.B’s chair, Clare Cannon told Samoa Observer.

“Ken used to be the C.E.O. for cricket Victoria for many years so we set it all up because there were a lot of overseas tours for young men through school with cricket but there was nothing for girls.

“So I had twin daughters who played the sport and my son went on an overseas tour but the girls haven’t so in the end we thought we would bite the bullet and took a team of 14 girls from the Victoria Academy to England in the first year.”

After their maiden tour, the team saw the importance of their stance and began to travel more.

“On the second year of the programme, a Singaporean set up a tournament in Singapore and we played them, Hon Kong, Thailand and Japan,” Mrs. Cannon said.

“And then the third year we went along and promoted the game in Darwin amongst young women.

“The following year the I.C.C. East Asia Pacific organized a tournament and invited us to Japan to become their sixth team because Fiji wasn’t sending their women’s team.

“Last year we went to Fiji to really help develop the women’s game there and we had a few games against their national team.

“And now this year we were invited here to be the fourth team in the World Cup Qualifiers; so whoever is not playing in the qualifier can play us.

“These girls may not be the national team but they are all strong pathway cricketers.”

Another driving force for the team is a vision a young girl once had before losing her life to bone marrow failure.

Today’s game is Maddie Riewoldt’s vision game and we are community partners with Maddie Riewoldt’s,” Mrs. Cannon said.

“Maddie was a young woman who died at the age of 23 from bone marrow failure and her brother was quite a famous footballer.

“The family set up this foundation to raise money to try and find a cure and to raise awareness of bone marrow failure.

“That’s why we are wearing purple today.

“We are here and we are loving Samoa very much.”

© Samoa Observer 2016

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