CRICKET: Charlotte Love played cricket for the first time on Friday at the opening night of T20 Blast at Kingaroy's Lyle Vidler Oval.
"I got to hit a lot of balls and it was a lot of fun,” she said.
"My favourite part is bowling because you can hit the wickets and try and get people out, it feels awesome.”
There was a lively atmosphere with music blasting while 70 kids aged seven to 12 years played small games around the oval and learnt new skills.
Queensland Cricket regional manager for the Sunshine Coast and Wide Bay Sam Curtis said they were overwhelmed with the response from the community.
"When we looked at the region and saw there was nothing happening in the entry-level space, in2cricket and T20 Blast, we said that something has got to happen,” he said.
The program involves kids from Nanango, Wondai, Murgon and Kingaroy and was intended to be an inter-town competition but has evolved into 70 kids playing at a centralised venue.
"We'd planned for 32 kids and we thought we may not make it but it exploded,” Curtis said.
"It is as big or if not bigger than a lot of the things that are happening in the metro region in Brisbane so we are ecstatic that something like this is happening in the South Burnett.
"I'm so happy that the community is involved and the amount of volunteers there are and the amount of kids with smiles on their faces.
"I believe the success is down to what the community has done and how they have driven it and then we flow onto that in terms of school visits and promoting.
"The ground work was done by the volunteers and they are the ones who should take the majority of the credit for how big it has become.”
While playing many kids were dancing and enjoying the night, which Curtis said is what it is all about.
"The purpose is first and foremost for them to have fun and enjoy themselves and to actually like the game of cricket and to understand it is not just statues standing around and that it's not boring,” he said.
"This is an hour and a half, it's action the whole time, if the kids aren't batting they go over to the skill zone, no one is standing still, no one is bored, there are balls going everywhere, people are developing.”
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