Peel club takes out growing cricket for Women and Girls Award

Women and girls playing cricket and White Knights Baldivis Cricket Club go hand-in-hand, with the club walking away with the Women & Girls Initiative of the Year award.

The growing cricket for women and girls initiative showcases how clubs go about creating inclusive pathways for females at all levels and grades of community cricket. 

In the past eight years, White Knights Baldivis Cricket Club has grown from two girls playing in a boys team, to just under 80 female cricketers playing in dedicated female teams. 

President Daniel Cole says the invaluable leadership of Head Coach Luke Grey has been instrumental in achieving the success of the female programs. 

“The environment he creates, the fun he brings, the all-inclusive attitude that he has, he treats a Year 4 player exactly the same he would an A-grade player,” he says. 

“It is really important for our female players to feel safe, to feel welcomed and enjoy themselves and without Luke, we wouldn’t have the female program we have.” 

Head Coach Luke Grey says the progression of the girls and female program since its introduction back in 2016 has been incredible.

“It started with five or six girls who first came to the team and by the end of the first season, we had eight girls playing for us and now we’ve got seven female teams playing cricket, including two senior ladies’ teams,” he says.

Grey says the decision to move all girls and female training sessions to the same night at the club’s home base in Baldivis created a comfortable environment for every female player to thrive. 

“We were adamant that we wanted the girls to be at our home base so people can see them when drive past and see that there are females playing cricket in the area and know there is a space here for young girls to come and join,” he says.

“We have some more experienced players who have been playing for a couple of years and some brand-new players.

“It was beneficial for the youngsters seeing the older players go about it as well for the development of the older players to show a bit of leadership and teach the youngsters how to go about it as well.”

Cole says the club works closely with their local community in the Peel region to encourage young girls and females to join the game.

“We are in partnerships with schools, we provide the facility for school use through the year, and we provide graduation awards for local schools,” he says.

Cole says for the club to be acknowledged for their work they do in women and girls cricket by receiving the award meant a great deal to the whole organisation. 

“The program is something we’ve had a big focus on for a long period of time,” he says.

“To be recognised with first the WA Cricket award and now the Cricket Australia award, I am beyond words with how proud I am of our program, and everyone involved in it.”