In a welcome move, Cricket Australia launched a five-year strategic plan to increase the numbers of players in the age group of 5 to 12 while also prioritising the need to get fans back to watch the game live.
The plan aims to double the number of boys playing the game 2,10,000 and quadruple the number of girls in the same age bracket to 60000.
In its bid to bring about transformative changes, the CA also wants to ensure it makes a positive social through the game by providing more opportunities to girls and women and that it is accessible to people from culturally diverse backgrounds.
Anticipating that cricket will be part of the 2032 Olympics Games in Brisbane after women’s cricket’s successful inclusion at the Birmingham CWG, Cricket Australia also wants to build a culture for the sport in the country.
The CA on Monday unveiled its plan that features 10 priorities across four interrelated pillars.
The CA said the objectives that will govern decision-making through to 2027 have been developed after an extensive consultation process that involved thousands of fans and stakeholders from all parts of the cricket spectrum.
“Australian cricket’s priorities will now be to strengthen the engagement between fans and players, continue to produce world-class teams, entrench a strong and innovative business model and establish a framework for the game’s positive social impact,” according to a report by cricket.com.au.
“The strategy also sets an ambitious target of doubling the number of kids aged 5 to 12 registered to play cricket to 210,000, and quadrupling the number of girls registered in this age group to 60,000 over the next five years,” the report further read.
“With cricket likely to feature at the 2032 Olympic Games in Brisbane, following its re-introduction at the Birmingham Commonwealth Games, CA wants to use the time period to create a culture for the sport in the country,” CA said.
“CA has also set a target of winning a minimum of three ICC events each in men’s and women’s sections in the next five years,” the CA pointed out in its report.
Further, getting spectators back into the stadiums has been earmarked as a top priority with a special focus on BBL and WBBL.
Both the men’s and women’s events have a target of annual
attendance of 1.25 million across the competitions, in a wider goal of an average of 2.4 million fans.
“Cricket is rapidly evolving and, with that, so too are the ways cricket is played, watched, and consumed. This strategy contains both a vision and a clear plan for how we can achieve bold, transformative change while also meeting our core responsibilities,” CA chief executive Nick Hockley said.
“This includes ensuring that cricket has a positive social impact, whether by providing more opportunities for women and girls, making the game more accessible to participants from culturally diverse backgrounds or taking the necessary steps to make the game environmentally sustainable,” he added.
Australia will next face Zimbabwe, New Zealand and India in three separate series.