By Casey Neill
A local MP has gone in to bat for Endeavour Hills Cricket Club.
In Parliament on 7 June, Dandenong MP Gabrielle Williams asked Sports Minister John Eren to “approve funding for improvements to the facilities and infrastructure of the Endeavour Hills Cricket Club”.
Specifically, the club is seeking funding to install an electronic scoreboard at Sydney Pargeter Reserve.
Ms Williams told Parliament that the club was in the Victorian Sub-District Cricket Association (VSDCA), the second-tier turf cricket competition in Victoria, and was the second most senior club in the region.
“But, unfortunately, their facilities are in need of an upgrade,” she said.
“Their facilities are used by people of all cultures and backgrounds, and the club actively fosters a friendly and welcoming atmosphere.
“We know that local sporting clubs strengthen individuals and strengthen our communities.
“They are places where people from all walks of life come together to share a mutual love of the game.
“In a highly multicultural electorate like Dandenong it is clear that sporting clubs provide a connection between cultures, ages and sexes, offering an inclusive and constructive social outlet.”
Endeavour Hills Cricket Club vice president Tom Hollis said the club was confident the scoreboard would be installed in September despite a funding shortfall.
“We haven’t got it all, we do need a bit more,” he said.
“It’s going to be a great plus for the club.
“That is going to be positioned on our main cricket ground, for the seniors.”
Mr Hollis said the club hoped the new scoreboard plus a surface upgrade would attract new players.
“The demographics of our area, we’re probably a little bit challenged,” he said.
“The time commitment to cricket these days seems a bit hard for people, so we are battling a bit with our playing numbers.
“We are down across the board, both juniors and seniors.
“I think it’s just reflective of the amount of time people have in their lives.
“We’re trying to be a bit more involved in the community to ensure everyone knows that we’re here.
“We are the biggest sporting club in Endeavour Hills, pretty much, with great facilities.
“We were established in 1978, so we’re coming up to our 40th year.”