History was made over the Bank Holiday Weekend, when hundreds of women and spectators gathered for the Women’s Softball Cricket Festival, hosted by Old Xavs CC in partnership with Lancashire Cricket Foundation. The Festival was the first to be held in the city of Liverpool and marks a new chapter for the club in its plans to become a centre of excellence for female cricket.

The festivals are an ECB initiative now in their second year aimed at getting more women playing cricket. The style is fast, fun and social based around teams of 6 and is aimed at adult females who have never played cricket before, or very little. Colourful team shirts are provided and after the quick fire, simple games to a backdrop of music, and a party atmosphere.

At the Old Xavs event, 5 teams were entered including a team of Indian ladies from Manchester. The enjoyment by the players was immense, as was the appreciation by spectators. Many of the ladies want to continue and the club in response is putting on weekly sessions to sustain the enthusiasm.

Paul Bate, the club’s Women & Girls Cricket Development Officer and Lead Coach, said: “The Festival was an unmitigated success. We are delighted that in Year One we have been able to generate such high levels of participation. The ladies played with no little skill and a huge amount of spirit. Even on the day we were asked by the players about doing more. With help from Lancashire Cricket Foundation, we feel we got the offer just right in making the event relevant and attractive with the group warm up to music, a fun and festive atmosphere, and the ability for the ladies to relax and socialise at the end. We will definitely be hosting Women’s Softball Festivals in future years.”

The club are now offering weekly sessions for women’s cricket on Wednesdays at 6.00pm, commencing on the 6th June, with the Ladies Cricket Night Launch which includes free drinks and canapés. All sessions are free and are open to all. No experience required. Contact: Paul Bate, Women & Girls Cricket Development Officer and Lead Coach, M: 07713 629673, girlscricketoxscc@virginmedia.com