Welcome news for struggling cricket clubs around New Zealand – a fund has been made available by ANZ Bank New Zealand to assist with their recovery from the COVID19-imposed hiatus.
New Zealand Cricket chief executive David White has hailed the ANZ Good Sports Grants, which pledges $1 million to support the return of grassroots cricket, as “a hugely generous offer of support, and a significant shot in the arm for the community game”.
“NZC views community cricket as an absolute priority and this generosity from ANZ NZ will make a real difference to clubs and club cricketers throughout the country,” said White.
“I can’t really overstate this point – the grassroots part of the game represents the life and blood of our sport and its health is critical to the future of cricket at all levels, including the BLACKCAPS and the WHITE FERNS. ANZ NZ has been a long-time supporter of cricket, and sport in general, and this program just re-emphasizes that, helping ensure our local teams and younger players get out on the field in the 2020-21 season. We’re very grateful for the assistance. We know circumstances are tough for families and clubs and that this support will make a significant and immediate difference.”
ANZ NZ has had longstanding relationships with NZC ANZ NZ CEO Antonia Watson said conversations with NZC highlighted how badly community sport had been impacted in recent months.
“For most New Zealanders, life as we knew it stopped a few months ago, and that included Kiwi kids’ Saturday morning sport,” she said.
“As New Zealand moves down the Covid-19 Alert Levels and we return to a more familiar way of life, it’s important to help kids back into their team sport and physical activity. We worked with NZC and Netball New Zealand to create a community grant programme as they both told us community clubs would be facing different challenges as they get back up and running again. In response we created the ANZ Good Sport Cricket and Netball Grant programme committing $1 million to help local teams and clubs return to the games they enjoy.”
All local netball and cricket clubs or teams can apply for support through the ANZ grant. They can apply for cricket equipment or apply for funding to help with team registration fees, rent or even ground maintenance.