Early in 2006, Dr Norman Waddington, a local blind academic, asked Councillor Kay Binnersley if she knew of a cricket club that would be interested in staging a ‘Blind Cricket Event’.
The main purpose being to raise awareness among the Visually Impaired Community, that their eye condition need not exclude them from sport.
When Kay approached us, we had never heard of the variation to our sport and therefore knew nothing of the special equipment needed or the extra rules that apply to the 4 classes of eye conditions. To prepare us for hosting an Event that would hopefully bring Blind Cricket to the North of England, we were introduced to David Gavrilovic, who was at the time the Chairman of British Blind Cricket.
David, who is the Northants Captain, spent a day coaching us in the special skills and techniques needed to play this extraordinary fascinating and humorous slant on our beloved game. It is now an annual event, each being more successful than the previous, and all of them attended by local dignitaries.
The 2008 Event attracted no less than three Mayors from Wakefield, Featherstone and Morley. The 2009 Event was adopted by the Blind Cricket England and Wales as one of their Official Events.
It featured the Inaugural Match of the newly formed Yorkshire V.I. Cricket Club against a Northern Galloways Team who will form the nucleus of the Lancashire squad to play in the National League in 2010. This attracted our biggest crowd yet and was attended by the Deputy Mayor of Wakefield and his Wife.