Our Aim

At Saffron Walden CC we firmly believe that cricket is a game for everyone of all abilities and that selection should not only be determined by ability. We want all our junior players to enjoy cricket and to be able to make a meaningful contribution to matches.

Our primary objective at age-group level is to give our young players a love of the game and solid cricket skills in a positive, encouraging team atmosphere. We want age-group cricket to be fun and inclusive. We are also keen to proactively develop access to cricket for state school pupils. Our Under 7 to Under 16 squads are therefore open to all players within the relevant age brackets and all players within those squads will receive a high standard of coaching.

However, we are also an ambitious club and our 1st XI currently plays the highest grade of recreational cricket in the East Anglian Premier League. To ensure that the club can continue to compete at that level, it is important that we nurture the most talented young cricketers and develop them into the 1st XI players of the future. That is the aim of our Emerging Players Squad. As is the case with the 1st XI, selection to the Emerging Player Squad is heavily based on cricketing aptitude.

Selection Criteria

The Emerging Players Squad is selected from the most talented young players in the club. Selection is by invitation. To be invited to join the Emerging Players Squad players must:

demonstrate the appropriate level of skill to compete at a high standard in hard ball cricket (including potentially playing at one/two age groups higher than their own);
demonstrate an ambition to play senior cricket for SWCC;
demonstrate commitment by attending training regularly at SWCC;
demonstrate an appropriately mature attitude;
demonstrate that they are willing to learn and work hard to improve their skills; and
be a good team player.
Our expectations of Emerging Players are intentionally high.

How Emerging Players are selected

Whether a young player satisfies the requirements outlined above will be assessed by the Emerging Players Squad Manager in consultation with club coaches, the relevant age group team managers and (where appropriate) the SWCC Academy Director. The squad manager will seek nominations from age group managers and coaches.

We do not hold formal trials, as players are assessed informally throughout the season. Age group managers are able to make nominations to the Emerging Players Squad Manager at any time. A player may, therefore, be invited to join the squad part way through a season if they are judged to be ready or, in exceptional circumstances, to leave the squad if they have not demonstrated the necessary skill, maturity and commitment.

Just because a player has not been invited to join the squad one year, it does not mean that they won’t be invited to join during a subsequent year. We are conscious that young players develop at different rates.

We do not accept parental nominations or player applications to join the Emerging Players Squad.

What does being an Emerging Player mean?

The principal aim of the Emerging Players Squad is elite player development. Players invited to join the squad will be asked to attend an additional 1.5 hour training session at the club each week (at no additional cost) and the best players within the squad may be invited to represent SWCC in prestigious county-wide cup competitions run by Essex.

Please note that an invitation to become a member of the Emerging Players Squad does not guarantee selection for cup matches or, if a player is selected, that they will bat or bowl as much as they might like. Players should understand that we intend to field the most competitive teams for Essex cup matches and that batting and bowling orders will be decided upon by the team manager based on cricketing reasons. Anyone asked to join the Emerging Players Squad should view it mainly as an opportunity to receive additional, targeted training and to learn from their peers regardless of whether or not they are selected for cup matches. Emerging Players may also be asked to fulfil 12th man duties during some 1st XI home fixtures.

Any questions regarding the Emerging Player Squad should be directed to SWCC Academy Director David Razzell.