OVER 200 budding cricketers from all over the country will from Monday enjoy a week-long cricket fiesta at St George’s College and Hartmann House during the annual Stragglers Cricket Festival.
The tournament is sponsored by financial services institution, Stanbic Bank.
The junior cricketers, aged between 9 and 12 years, will enjoy a week of full throttle cricket as they wind down from the pressure of school work while receiving all round cricket tips during the Stanbic Bank sponsored Stragglers Cricket Festival.
Dubbed the best grassroots cricket development event in the country, Stragglers Cricket Week has been running for over 60 years and Stanbic Bank has been the main sponsor since 2006.
The Festival gives junior cricket players the best cricket experience of their lives as they not only get an opportunity to bat and bowl but receive handy cricketing tips from selected senior Zimbabwe National Cricket Team players.
Head of Marketing and Communications at Stanbic Bank Zimbabwe, Palmer Mugavha, said the institution gets satisfaction from the format of the Festival which, apart from putting smiles on the faces of the young boys after a gruelling educational calendar, also contributes to the future of Zimbabwe cricket.
“Stanbic Bank’s decision to sponsor was easy because we are committed to playing a pivotal role in building the foundation of the sport on the back of support by the cream of Zimbabwean cricket talent, some of whom also passed through Stragglers.
“Over the years the players who participated at Stragglers have gone on to represent the Chevrons (Zimbabwe National Cricket Team), but the sweetener is that these players also come and share their cricketing experiences with the budding cricketers,” said Mugavha.
Another exciting aspect about Stragglers for Stanbic Bank is that young players from development sides and high density areas come and rub shoulders with those from elite schools creating an unparalleled bonding environment.
They mix and mingle, playing limited overs matches.
The Grade 4 and 5 cricketers play in the morning and the Grade 6 and 7s in the afternoon.
The players are placed into teams named after cricketing countries such as Zimbabwe, West Indies, India, England, Australia, and Sri Lanka.
Each Country challenges a different country every day during the week in limited overs matches.
All cricketers are rotated and each has a chance to bat and bowl and certificates are awarded to high achieving cricketers twice a day throughout the week.
Some of the country’s cricket legends past and present sharpened their talents through Stragglers, these include former captain and all-rounder Elton Chigumbura, P J Moor, Hamilton Masakadza and Craig Ervine.