Development of Cricket in Slovenia
Cricket origin in Slovenia:
Hi friends in this article let us discuss about the development of cricket in the European country, Slovenia.The history of Slovenian cricket goes back to the period between 1974 and 1982 when it was first played by a group of boys in the Mezica region.
This marked the start of cricket in the country and after them Borut Cegovnik was taught how to play the game and were also given some equipment as a gift on a language exchange trip to Brichington, Kent.
Development of the game:
The first step in their development started in the year 1997 when Ljubljana CC was established.It was in 200, the first Slovenian national team competed in Vienna an this was a tournament for the European Representative .
Ljubljana CC reunited with the Mezica CC was reunited and after that they established as a cricket club and at present it resulted in having a cricket ground of their own.The Ljubljana CC team is shown below
In 2007 another 2 clubs were established an these includes clubs in Bela.Krajina and Maribor and they also started playing competitive cricket from the same year.
Again in 2008 another club was established called asLjubljana Zabarji.By the end of this year(2009) two mor enew clubs Majsperk and Motvarjevci will be established in the North Eastern part of Slovenia.
First success in the international level came for Slovenia in 2000 when they joined the ICC as a prospective member.But Slovenia gained the Affiliate membership in 2005 and this was a great step for the development of cricket.
The Slovenian Cricket Association(SCA) takes full responsibility for the development of the among among school children and in 2003 they started teaching cricket at school level where annual tournaments are held.
At present cricket is full sporting module in the National Schools Curriculum and students are very eager to learn the game.
The National Sports Faculty in Ljubljana has started working with the Slovenian Cricket Association from this year (2009) so as to introduce cricket as a module to students of sport,and therefore a part of the examination will be the ICC level 1 coaching course.
The Junior programme which is a part of development programme was established and with this programme many schools are visited by volunteers from Ljubljana Cricket Club and others introducing cricket to primary school children.
A well-received and regular coaching was organised and as a result of this the schools themselves have set up their own independent inter-school competitions.
Apart from this The Slovenian Cricket Association also takes care of introducing the under 19, under 15 and under 13 levels and they also play against similar teams in Austria, Italy and Hungary.
Many players have attended the umpiring and coaching courses and as result of these steps the Slovenian Cricket Association has recently built practice nets in the grounds of one of the schools where the school tournaments are played.
They have also planned for an annual coaching and umpiring courses and in addition to this,3 permanent and 2 temporary grounds will be established by the end of 2009.
Not only boys but girls also take part in coaching and competitions and to be specific one of the schools has regular
coaching for a girls-only group and this year (2009) has seen more and more women competing in matches and the Slovenian Cricket association is confident that by 2010 a women's team will be formed.
International Exposure and Domestic Competition
So far Slovenia has competed in four international competitions that includes
i)At Vienna in 2000
ii)At Zagreb in 2002
iii)At Ljubljana in 2004 and
iv)At Belgium in 2006
Even though they couldn't win any tournaments they managed to win matches in every tournament.Apart from this in 2004, Slovenia successfully hosted the ICC European Division 4 Championship Tournament.
In 2006, they played their first ever International Twenty20 against Finland in Antwerp.They also hosted its first
tournament,which is a a six-team European Representative Tournament in Ljubljana in 2004.Among the star players of the Slovenian team Urban Blaznik is considered as the best bowler and he he started learning to play after first seeing cricket at Ljubljana Cricket Club.
Another great achievement for Slovenia was in 2006 when two of the Slovenian players, a batsman and bowler, were selected in the ICC European Division 4 Dream Team because of their consistent performances during the international tournament which was conducted in Belgium.
There is a good group of youngsters developing and so it is expected that the sport will go from strength to strength in the future, especially once the planned National Centre of Cricketing Excellence is created.
When it comes to the Domestic Level tournament, the most important competitions includes
i)The Slovenian National Championships
#)4 teams takes part in this and all teams are Slovene-only teams.
#)This competition takes place for over 2 months
#)Recently this competition was won by Mezica CC
ii)The Harvey Norman National Cup
#)All the Slovenian teams take part in this tournament
iii)The Harvey Norman Primary School Championships
#)This competition was held for the last six years
#)Many primary schools won this competition
iv)The National Cup and Championships
#)By 2010 this competition will be expanded to six-team Slovene-only competition.
Apart from this from 2000 the Ljubljana Cricket Club has competed in the Austrian Open League.The Southern League Competition was also proposed and this includes clubs from countries like Hungary, Slovakia, Croatia and Slovenia and of all the teams participating Maribor CC is considered as the strong participant
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