(As adopted at the League’s AGM on 28 March 2022)
Under Age Players
For a player under the age of 18 to be allowed to play in the VPCCL, the following must be observed:
• They must be in at least school Year 8
• They must be a minimum of 13 years old on 1st September of the preceding year.
• Parental consent should be provided to the League Secretary at least 48 hours in advance, so that the Secretary can contact the parent for verification.
• The opposition captain must be informed
• Both captains to read, and be guided by, the ECB ‘guidance document’ ahead of the match.
Batters Not Wearing Helmets
Any adult that is hit on the head, whilst not wearing a helmet, shall immediately retire, and not return as a player in that innings.
Any child that is hit on the head whilst batting (in a helmet) shall immediately retire, and not return as a player that innings.
The wearing of helmets by batsmen is highly recommended
ECB Guidelines for Junior Players in Open Age Group Cricket
The ECB has issued guidance covering the selection and participation of young players in open age group cricket. This is to help clubs decide when to select young players in open age group cricket and how best to help their cricketing development when they play within open age groups. The guidance applies to boys and girls. The ECB keeps these guidelines under review.
The guidance is as follows:
• Making the step up from junior to open age group cricket is a significant event in any player’s cricket experience. Ensure the player’s safety, personal development needs and overall cricket experience are considered
• Clubs, squad coaches and managers must take into account the requirements on age detailed in this guidance.
• Each case is to be determined on an individual basis, depending on the player’s ability and stage of cognitive and emotional maturity to take part at this level – however, the minimum age guidance provided below must be adhered to.
• Juniors should be involved in all aspects of the game wherever possible i.e. socialising, team talks, practice, decision making and so on, so they feel part of the team.
• Children will often feel more comfortable and able to perform if they have a family member or friend also playing in the side
• Remember, children’s early experiences will remain with them always and will often determine whether they want to remain playing the game or give up and do something else
• Provide an opportunity for players to show their talents in an appropriate way. Children who are just used as fielders will not fully experience the game
• Be supportive, at all times, for all forms of effort even when children are not successful. Try and put them in situations where they will experience some success (however small) and ensure plenty of praise and encouragement
• The captain should inform the Umpires of under-18s in the side.
ECB Helmets, Fast Bowling Directives and Fielding Regulations should always be adhered to for junior players in Open age group 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
In addition, the guidelines note the need for clubs and leagues to recognise the positive experience young players should have in open age cricket. Clubs should provide an opportunity for players to show their talents in an appropriate way.
See following links for more guidance: