Cape Town - The 32nd annual Calypso Beach Festival took place on Wednesday at Sunrise Beach in Muizenberg with 501 children from marginalised communities throughout the Western Cape participating in the event.
Calypso cricket originated in the West Indies and adheres to most of the rules of cricket, however, it is played on the beach between two teams of ten players each, involving both boys and girls promoting inclusivity.
The children between the ages of 9-14 years from Langa, Ocean View, Khayelitsha, Westlake and rural Constantia enjoyed a day of fun in the sun during the annual event.
General Manager of Sporting Chance, Natalie Pollock said that their objective is to give sports development a platform as life skills education.
“We use the Calypso cricket festival as a way to bring the kids together and mix different cultures and communities of Cape Town and to grow the game of cricket. Another objective of the day is to spot some talent and we can see here are some natural talents and flair. It gets really exciting as there are some lovely diving catches in the water.”
“There is massive potential amongst the girls and the boys with women’s cricket on the rise, it is important to empower them with these opportunities and the boys have incredible bowling action all from communities where environments are hard.”
Joining in the fun was Springboks Physical Therapist, Rene Naylor and Johan Weyers from Cricket South Africa.
Weyers said he came all the way to Cape Town for the Calypso Beach Festival.
“To come out every year is awesome, we are very much surprised by all the talent from the youngsters, girls and boys.
“We support street cricket to ensure that we nurture talent and to provide opportunities for our youngsters to play the game of cricket.”
Esihle Mazinanye, 14 from Khayelitsha said people should watch out as he will become a professional cricketer.
“I enjoy being here, it is so fun. I feel at home. I love cricket very much and I am a batting all-rounder. One day I will become a professional cricket player, I believe in myself.”
In September eight children from the organisation participated at the Street Child Cricket World Cup in Chennai, India. One of the youngsters was Sihle Mbadu from Baphumelele Children's Home.