?FIVE to eight year olds will be encouraged to take up cricket, as part of a new initiative launched by the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB).
All Stars Cricket, a fun, active form of the game for boys and girls, is the first nationwide entry-level programme of its kind, starting in May.
Eight clubs on the Isle of Wight — Shanklin, Arreton, Freshwater, Ventnor, Ryde, Ryde Cavaliers, Newclose and Northwood — have all signed up.
Former England captain and All Stars Cricket ambassador Michael Vaughan said: "I started playing cricket at my local club and have seen first-hand how important it is to introduce kids to our sport in a fun way.
"As a parent, I’ve also seen how tough it can be to get kids interested in sport, especially given the amount of activities competing for their time.
"Finding a way for cricket to appeal to kids and to get them active is more important than ever.
"We are bringing cricket to the front door of kids and parents across England and Wales and I can’t wait to see the positive impact this will have on clubs and the wider game."
Parents can sign their children up via allstarscricket.co.uk.
Those who take part in the eight-week scheme will receive a cricket back-pack delivered with a bat, ball and other equipment needed to play the game.

Reporter: sport@iwcp.co.uk