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Occupying the crease: an exploration of youth cricket in New Zealand
journal contributionposted on 2005-12-01, 00:00 authored by Cadeyrn GaskinCadeyrn Gaskin, R Garland
Recruiting and retaining participants is a challenge that most sport administrators face. The present study examined motives for participation/discontinuation in cricket, propensity to play in the future, and the influence that various initiatives had on youths' propensities to play. A nationwide survey of 858 young New Zealand cricketers revealed six underlying motives for participating in cricket: team, competition, mastery, extrinsic rewards, fitness and being active, with the first three of these being the strongest predictors of propensity to play. Together the six motives explained 17% of the variance in propensity to play. None of the initiatives tested increased the likelihood of playing cricket for those who were currently involved. For those who had stopped playing, their reasons for ceasing were most likely to be the lure of other sports or activities. Nonetheless, initiatives that increased their chances of participating in cricket again were playing in a social competition, having better equipment, having less costly equipment, and being provided with the opportunity to meet top players. These findings have important implications for cricket administrators in terms of the management and promotion of youth cricket in New Zealand.