Social Futures bowled over by Bathurst Community All Stars    

Written byAmanda Shoebridge
Published on29 Apr, 2024
Shows the back of a t-shirt with Community All Stars vs Social Futures

Bathurst’s All Stars took on the Social Futures Team to a stunning 10 run victory in their first ever game

Bathurst’s Learmonth Park hosted Bathurst’s first Blind Cricket Community Challenge last week with Social Futures’ team taking on the Bathurst Community All Stars.  

In an exciting match the All Stars – a team made up of community leaders from organisations including Bathurst Regional Council, TAFE, Disability Advocacy, and NSW Police – stole the show scoring 72 runs from 14 overs next to Social Futures 62 runs. 

Former captain of the New South Wales Blind Cricket Team, Scott Jones, said the Social Futures Team bowled first and did a great job limiting the All-Stars to 72 runs, but their batters couldn’t make it through the All-Stars defence.  

 “The Social Futures Team never really got going with their batting, mainly due to the brilliant fielding of the opposition,” Jones said.  

Event organiser, Social Futures Community Development Coordinator, Caitlin Bennett, said the day was such a success, Social Futures plan to make it an annual occurrence.  

“We’d like to thank the Community All Stars team for a great day. We would love to see this as an annual event and I can see it is just going to get bigger and better next year,” Bennett said.  

Shows Scott teaching the Community All Stars the rules of the game Shows Scott teaching the Community All Stars the rules of the game - with cricket bats and gloves in the foreground 2

Click below to listen to ABC Central West Story by Murray McCloskey.

About blind cricket

Blind cricket is just like normal cricket but uses a plastic ball filled with ball bearings so players can hear it coming and it is bowled underarm. Also, players without vision impairment wear experiential glasses purposed to depict different vision impairments. 

A blind cricket team is made up of four totally blind players (B1), three players with less than 5% vision (B2) and four players with 5 to 10% vision (B3). Totally blind batters get three runs for every one run scored.  

Scott, a Social Futures employee and current member of the NSW Blind Cricket Team, lives on the Central Coast where he takes blind cricket workshops into NSW schools. He says the game is a really great way to engage young people in conversation about disability and inclusion and he hopes the community matches will likewise spark awareness. 

“Sport is a great vehicle for inclusion as both rules and equipment can be modified. Blind cricket is a great example,” Jones said.    

 “Ensuring people with disability are included in the community is everyone’s job. We are very grateful to the Bathurst community members who came along to compete in Bathurst’s first-ever blind cricket community challenge.”   

 Prior to the match, a free come-and-try session for the community was held run by Blind Sports NSW and delivered by NSW blind cricket coach, Jason Stubbs, who’s guided the NSW team to five consecutive national titles. Jason also manages Blind Sports NSW.   

Social Futures thanks the Bathurst Community All Stars, as well as the wider Bathurst Community for hosting the match and cheering on from the sidelines.  

The blind cricket experience in schools 

The Blind Cricket Experience is currently being delivered to schools on the Central Coast and in the Northern Rivers region.

For more information you can visit: https://socialfutures.org.au/service/blind-cricket-is-coming-to-the-central-coast/  email [email protected] or call the Social Futures LAC hotline on 1800 522 679 (Mon-Fri 8:30am – 4:30pm).