Cricket? In Hungary? For children as well?
This is the usual reaction when people are told that the 2nd most popular sport in the world is also played in Central Europe. But it’s true: adults and children alike can enjoy the fun of cricket right here in Budapest by getting involved with Bat and Ball Cricket Academy.
BBCA was created in 2010 by Active8 Budapest co-founder Andrew Leckonby and is co-managed together with Duncan Shoebridge. Both Andrew and Duncan are professional, qualified, and expe- rienced cricket and football coaches who have a strong sense for making things fun, and at the same time meaningful and focussed.
Girls, Boys, Women, Men, Hungarians, Expatri- ates, Beginners & Experienced Players
Cricket truly is a sport for everyone, and BBCA’s team of experienced coaches are old hands at making things fun for whoever would like to give the game a try. With a truly ‘international’ member- ship base, there is no such thing as a language barrier to prevent someone new from quickly fitting in to the welcoming atmosphere. Many members are from ‘non-cricketing-nations’ and most joined as total beginners who immediately fell in love with the game.
The club’s focus is on providing top quality train- ing for children, but there are many opportunities for adults to get involved too. Andrew & Duncan also run the Baggy Blues Cricket Club, the largest cricket club in Hungary with teams in each division of the Hungarian Cricket League, giving playing opportunities for male and female cricketers of any skill level.
Fun Training Sessions All Week
BBCA’s cricket programs are happening some- where in Budapest nearly every day of the week! With after-school clubs at AISB, BBIS, BISB, and Britannica international schools during the week and a Saturday afternoon program OPEN TO EVERYONE at Folyondar Sports & Dance Center, BBCA keep close to 70 boys and girls actively happy with the fun of cricket. Training sessions involve a lot of fun activities based around gen- eral ball skills and coordination, in addition to drills and matchplay that focus more specifically on cricketing skills such as batting, bowling and fielding.
League Matches, Local Tournaments, even International Tours!
Competitive matchplay is important and provides extra purpose to the skills developed at practice. BBCA recognise this and in addition to games with- in training sessions, children get the opportunity to participate in regular tournament play. This includes in-house tournaments amongst other BBCA players, inter-school matches, and even several international tours each year, to places such as Vienna, Belgrade, and – most popular of all – an annual tour to Sussex and Surrey in the UK!!! BBCA also has a team in the Hungarian Cricket League, formed by the older children, parents and coaches, giving a fantastic opportunity for parent and child to play the sport they love, together, in a competitive format. What other sport can give that to families in Budapest?
The BBCA Annual Tour of Sussex and Surrey, UK
This is an undisputed highlight of the BBCA year. Every year since 2013 a team of young, enthusi- astic cricketers have taken to the July skies and headed to the UK to test their cricket skills against local teams in the cricketing heartlands of Sussex and Surrey. Year upon year the achievements of the team astound even the players themselves, culminating in 2017’s incredible success of return- ing home undefeated. It seems that the hard work at training is paying off, and the coaching methods are working too 🙂
The UK tour is about much, much more than just the on-field action. It’s a complete cultural and linguistic experience to spend a full week enjoy- ing not just playing cricket, but visiting popular tourist sites in London, attending a professional cricket match live, getting autographs of interna- tionally famous players, and best of all building irreplaceable friendships with teammates. There’s nothing quite like spending a whole week together
for building team spirit and camaraderie, and the same goes for the many parents who choose to join the fun of the tour as well!
Holiday Camps Throughout the Year
BBCA provide Cricket Holiday Camps during most school holiday periods, and these are open to com- pletebeginnersaswellastoregularBBCAmembers. The focus of these camps is of course on cricketing fun, but also includes other games and activities to further build the fun and friendship. The next oppor- tunity to enjoy a cricket holiday camp are the BBCA Summer Camps on June 25-29 and July 2-6.
A Final Warning
BBCA feel the need to warn you in advance that cricket is a completely addictive sport and quickly becomes a lifelong passion. Many a child has hesitatingly come for their first experience of cricket only to discover that it changed their life forever. Be careful! ○