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Cambourne Village College are named national secondary school of the year at cricketing Chance to Shine awards

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Cambourne Village College receive their Chance to Shine award at Lord's. Picture: Judy Czylok (22466316)
Cambourne Village College receive their Chance to Shine award at Lord's. Picture: Judy Czylok (22466316)

Cambourne Village College has been named Secondary School of the Year at the annual Chance to Shine Awards.

The awards are presented annually to those who have made notable contributions in ‘spreading the power of cricket’.

Cambourne took part in a pilot programme run by Chance to Shine to get more girls involved and the Secondary School of the Year award criteria focused on schools which have developed leadership opportunities for students.

The programme was a six-week course, where 24 girls attended coaching and leadership sessions after school with a Cambridgeshire Cricket coach, building on basic cricket skills and games as well as developing communication, leadership and teamwork skills.

By the end of the six weeks they had started up their own girls’ cricket club and had officiated at several primary cricket festivals as well as attended a few cricket competitions of their own.

Head of PE Hannah Curtis said: “We are excited to announce that funding has been given for us to run the same course this year hoping to engage even more girls in cricket.”

Some of the students involved joined Curtis, fellow PE teacher Lindsey Gassner, who set up the CamVC programme, and coach Matt Morley at the prestigious ceremony, sponsored by long-time cricket backers NatWest, which took place at Lord’s last week.

Renee, Isabella and Alice, who are part of the Cambourne VC team, reported: “It was a very memorable night. We were lucky enough to have won the Secondary School of the Year award for our efforts in the girls’ cricket leadership programme back in June.

“This programme allowed us to improve our cricketing skills, confidence and communication.

“It was a fantastic opportunity to take part in as we could inspire a younger generation to join in with cricket inside and outside of school.

“The night was presented by Eleanor Oldroyd, who is a fantastic sports journalist and a two-time winner of the Sports Journalists’ Association Broadcast Presenter of the Year.

“We had the privilege of meeting Matt Prior, a former England wicketkeeper, who played 79 tests, 68 ODIs and was part of the England team who won three Ashes series home and away.

“We also met Ryan Sidebottom, a former England, Nottinghamshire and Yorkshire fast bowler. During his career he took more than 1,000 wickets and was part of the ICC World Twenty20 2010 tournament.

“It was a great night and we can’t wait to continue our cricket and cricket leadership in the summer months.”

In the schools coach of the year category, Morley was shortlisted and finished in the top three in the country.

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