Murray Valley Cricket Association will enter a new era this summer with the running of an inaugural girls’ competition.
Cricket Victoria and Northern Rivers female development officer Leah Morrison hopes the initiative will encourage young girls across the region to pick up a bat or ball and get involved in the sport.
‘‘Growing up in the Murray Valley I played cricket in boys’ teams the whole way through my junior career, and girls sometimes don’t get much of a go,’’ Morrison said.
‘‘This will be brilliant for girls who have been sidelined through not being able to compete with the boys but still have the passion to play cricket.’’
A 20-over competition will run for six weeks through November and December, with teams of seven taking to the field.
All players will receive the opportunity to bowl in every match, while batters will retire after reaching 17 runs.
With accredited coaches available to help teach new and established players alike, Morrison is confident a future Australian star could be among the ranks of the new venture.
‘‘They’re only going to keep growing and learning as they go,’’ she said.
‘‘Hopefully they can move through to representative cricket and even on to Melbourne and be future Southern Stars.’’
The matches will be held on Wednesday nights and are expected to take two hours, with prospective players encouraged to contact their local club, school or Morrison on 0459419316.
‘‘The girls can sign up with a local club so they can play with us on a Wednesday and their club on a weekend if they want,’’ Morrison said.
‘‘We’re just trying to encourage more girls to come along and bring their friends, they can also sign up with their school as well.
‘‘I’ve been able to travel the world through cricket and I want more girls to be able to get to experience what I have.’’