AUSTRALIAN COUNTRY CRICKETEER'S CLUB
AUSTRALIAN COUNTRY CRICKETEER'S CLUB
Foundation Members: Ken Jacobs OAM, Jim Higgs OAM, Trevor Laughlin, Mervyn Hughes, Ian Callen
Each weekend Ian Callen watch his father Lloyd playing for cricket on the ground behind the Yarck pub. Yarck played in the Alexandra District Cricket Association against Eildon, Marysville, Thornton, three (3) Alexandra teams in those days and Taggerty… but that was many years ago, today the entire Region struggles to field a cricket team. This is such a tragic story but not the only one.
Just over the range from Yarck to the North West is Euroa where Australian fast bowler Mervyn Hughes was born to play. Euroa made up the Euroa District Cricket Association and further to the north-west between Shepparton and Echuca where the Goulburn meets the Murray River... Australian Test players Matthew Elliott and Jim Higgs learned their cricket in the Kyabram District Cricket Association... they too are extinct.
These are just three of the many Cricket Associations from outside the Metro area all over the country that have folded and in my opinion; nothing of any real consequence has ever been done to solve the problem associated with dwindling numbers. Many reasons have been put forward but nothing to address the issues that might rejuvenate interest or enthusiasm… just lip service, so as a group we have decided to do something positive.
The first thing we've done is recognize "GRASS ROOTS CRICKET" is about those boys and girls who are being attracted to the game by their idols, and this is where are going to invest the funds we generate from WillowBlue Australia's "Cricketeer's Pavilion' Tourist Venue.
Once operational we anticipate we'll be investing $1.2 mil every couple of years into Cricket regions outside major cities of Australia.
Ian Callen along with a group of former Australian Test Cricketers and Cricket Administrators (Cricketeers) are working to established the “Australian Country Cricketeers Club” (the Club). Our aim is to highlight the contribution Country Cricket has made and will continue to make to State and National Cricket.
We wish to ensure the traditions and cricketing goodwill created by Country Cricketers continues to be handed down to future generations.
We believe the number of home grown grass roots Cricketers playing first class cricket in a State identifies successful coaching programs so important to State and National Cricket.
We believe the inspiration for the future of the game comes from the efforts of those representing Australia on the Test Arena.
We aim to inspire those who show an interest in cricket, those who take up the challenge to emulate their cricket hero’s.
We aim to bring together Australian Country Cricketers and Volunteers as a collective group.
We will respectfully ask of each and every one of our 140 Test Representatives from regions outside capital cities or metropolitan area or their associated family members to loan a meaningful piece of cricketing memorabilia to the club for display in a museum we plan to create in the Cricketeers Pavilion a tourist ventue at Healesville in Victoria's Yarra Valley.
We will preserve these items and display them in such a manner to re-construct a memory or image it contributed to the history or tradition of our game so that it will never be lost.
Our club will make up an important part of the WillowBlue Australia’s “Cricketeers Pavilion” in attracting visitors to its venue overlooking its Village Cricket Ground.
We are not for profit and will distribute our share of the Admittance fee to Australian Country Cricket Clubs to employ Coaches to provide skill programs for children prior to competition.
We will also try to establish regional support groups to help promote Club activities and fundraising. We will do all such other acts, matters and things that may be incidental too or necessary for the purposes of enhancing and improving country cricket and player opportunities.
We want to unite rural regions ensuring that the contribution its Cricketers have made to the game are recognized in a manner that inspires a responsibility to the sport and its enjoyment.
We aim to work with Country Cricket Associations or Leagues providing a collective voice throughout our Nation.
Life Members: Australian Country Cricketers who played First Class Cricket or above (Men or Women).
Subscription Membership will be available to any cricketer or Volunteer to have played Country Cricket in Australia or any parent and their child who is or has played junior Country cricket. (Man, Woman, boy or girl) and we will include Grand Parents.
Statement of Intent
It is a proud tradition that links the cricketers who have work their way through the grades from grass roots cricket to the highest level of the game.
We also appreciate and acknowledge the effort of those who have nurtured grass roots cricket.
We understand that we owe so much to those who have handed the traditions of the game down. We recognise the path the game has travelled for more than a century and a half. How fortunate we are for those who have given so much to the game and will continue that journey.
The project outlined in this document hopes to provide the game outside of metro areas of Australia with a clear “statement of intent” and so inspire young Australians to become more involved in the game.
To promote past and present player goodwill
To promote and honour the traditions of the game Cricket
To assist development programs were needed
Ensure the games associates contribute
To develop community regional supporter bases and special events
To assist clubs with skill based development programs and recognize cricket experience as coaching accreditation.
Our Club Emblem
The Club emblem was drawn by Ian Callen, it depicts C.J. Dennis one of our most famous poet and writer who was a Cricketer, Umpire, Scorer, Volunteer and Administrator. The poem the “Umpire” from C.J. Dennis tells of a weary ex cricketers love, life and the game. It was discovered in the back of an old Toolangi Cricket Club Scorebook written in pencil.