Open Age Cricket

June 7, 2022

Please can Coaches and Captains check the current guidelines within Suffolk of U12 School year 7 playing in Open age Cricket, as we have had incidents of U12s playing when they should not be.

The current ECB guidelines are as below in respect of youngsters playing Open age Cricket  :

  • The minimum age for Open Age cricket is the U13 age group. Players must be in Year 8, and 12 years old on the 1st September of the preceding year.
  • This applies to all club and district players who are not in a county or area squad (or region in Wales). Written parental consent is required.

Exceptionally, players who are selected in a County U12 squad (or Regional squad in Wales) in spring for a summer squad – are also eligible to play Open age cricket.* Please be aware that at under 12 level the ECB recommends that the focus is on participation rather than Talent I.D, and many counties no longer run under 12 squads.

Inclusion of ANY Under 12s in Open Age teams should be an exception and not an expectation. *providing they are at least 11 years old, are in School Year 7 on 1st September in the year preceding the season, and have written parental consent to play.

It is essential clubs and coaches recognise the ‘duty of care’ obligations they have towards young players in Open Age cricket. The duty of care should be interpreted in two ways:

  • Not to place a young player in a position that involves an unreasonable risk to that young player, taking account of the circumstances of the match and the relative skills of the player.
  • Not to create a situation that places members of the opposing side in a position whereby they cannot play cricket as they would normally do against adult players.

As a result of the last paragraphs Suffolk Cricket have put in place that the decision as to whether a member of the County Squad can play or not is dependent on the recommendation of Andy Northcote Head of Suffolk Cricket Performance and Andrew Blanchard lead for Recreational Cricket  and Suffolk Young Cricketers.

This means their consent is required and any recommendations made must be fully complied with.

Any queries please do not hesitate to contact Graham Moss (County Safeguarding Officer, 07752415619)

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