“It is awesome to see youth cricket getting the exposure it deserves,” he said. “Our kids are the future and we need to look after them to the best of our ability.”
The tournament has been expanded to include 40 teams ranging from under-11s to under-15s.
The ethos of the tournament is to produce inclusive social cohesion, and give players a sense of cricket heritage.
“We will have just over 600 youth playing the game of cricket over the four days,” Awqaf SA deputy chief executive Mickaeel Collier explained.
This year will also see the introduction of a girls team to ensure girls have an equal opportunity to participate in sporting codes.
He added that tournament organisers wanted to use the medium of cricket as a means to get youth active again. “We wanted to get our children on the cricket field for a few hours as opposed to walking the streets.”
Western Province Cricket Association (WPCA) president Beresford Williams was appointed alongside WPCA chief executive Nabeel Dien as a patron for the tournament. He said the event was a “wonderful cricketing opportunity for youth to participate in”.
“Sport has become more relevant than ever before. The fact that so many clubs from different communities across Cape Town have been invited to participate in this tournament speaks volumes and promotes non-racialism in sports.”
Dien, an advocate for youth cricket, echoed these sentiments.
“Every day we talk about the state of our society, the state of our schools and the state of our facilities. We also talk about the state of our youth, which has been well documented in media.
“What we should be doing is talking about the solutions to these social and economic challenges that we face as a community. This tournament is an example of how we can face and resolve some of these challenges.”
The tournament team draw takes place at the official media launch on Saturday at the Primrose Cricket Grounds, Rosmead Avenue, in Kenilworth. For more information call 082 413 2838 or visit www.awqafsa.org.za.@TheCapeArgus