SOMERSET County Cricket Club have designated the current LV= Insurance County Championship home match against Surrey as their annual ‘Inclusion Match’.

The event is run in conjunction with the Somerset Cricket Foundation to recognise the achievements of those with a disability or additional needs playing cricket in the county.

It also highlights the roles played by parents, carers and coaches in supporting the players.

Demonstrations have been held on the outfield at the Cooper Associates County Ground in Taunton during the lunch intervals on the first two days of the Surrey game and another will take place on Tuesday.

On Sunday, the spotlight was on Super 1s, a programme funded by the Lord’s Taverners, which gives young people with a disability aged between 12 and 25 the chance to play regular, competitive cricket.

By creating community hubs where players can receive coaching, participants get the chance to compete against their peers and enjoy the benefits of playing sport.

Across the county, Somerset Cricket Foundation run seven Super 1s hubs in Bath, Bristol, Bridgwater, Street, Taunton, Weston Super Mare and Yeovil. Sessions are free to attend and run every week.

Also involved in Sunday’s demonstration were young people from Somerset’s three Street Cricket hubs, funded through the charity Chance 2 Shine.

They are for children aged between nine and 11 and take place in Bridgwater, Yeovil and Weston Super Mare.

The majority of Street Cricket participants do not belong to a traditional cricket club. Recently, a number travelled to Gloucestershire to take part in a regional Street Cricket competition and for many this was their first taste of competitive cricket.

During lunch on Monday, the second day of the Surrey match, the demonstration featured Somerset Disabled Cricket Club and Walking Cricket.

Tuesday’s demonstration will feature Somerset Visually Impaired Cricket Club and Community Groups and Schools.

Steve Gass, community programmes manager for Somerset Cricket Foundation, said: “We like to showcase our various programmes and Somerset Cricket Club provide the ideal platform.

“It has been great to have Director of Cricket Andy Hurry, offering his encouragement and support to the participants.

“These demonstrations inspire everyone involved and we thank Somerset CCC for sprinkling the stardust.”

By Richard Latham, ECB Reporters Network