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West Berkshire youngsters hooked by Ashes summer

Ashes Parade

England's Ashes success is driving interest in the game

West Berkshire Schools Sports Partnerships have been presented with a replica Ashes urn by ECB as recognition of their efforts in developing cricket in the area.

Cricket Development Officer Andy Hobbs from the Berkshire Cricket Board made the presentation, a reward for the role West Berks Schools Partnership played in driving interest in the game on the back of the 2005 Ashes summer.

Set up over two years ago, West Berks Schools Sports Partnership is running more of its successful cricket roadshows this year, with almost 30 schools in the area already signed up. A coach from Berkshire Cricket Board will be teaching pupils aged from 8-13 the rudiments of the game.

Andy Hobbs

Andy Hobbs

Teams from the particpating schools will compete in festivals held at local clubs during the summer - with the winners going through to the Berkshire Youth Games in July.

"There has been a huge amount of interest since the summer," Andy Hobbs told Newbury Today. “All the local clubs and schools are reporting that more kids want to play."

Kath Martin, Development Manager of the West Berks Schools Partnership, agreed: "There is now more enthusiasm from schools after the Ashes glory, more kids are now getting involved in cricket."

You can find out more details and view a video interview with Andy Hobbs on the Newbury Today website