One of the success stories of Bay of Plenty cricket in the past decade, has been the introduction and continued participation of Year 5 and 6 school pupils in the Mini World Cup.
The Mini World Cup was initiated by Bay of Plenty Cricket eight years ago, to introduce Year 5 and 6 school pupils to the game.
To give the competition the flavour of international cricket, all school teams represent a cricket-playing nation.
The success of the competition is the blending of girls and boys who have previously experienced the game with novice participants.
The purpose of the Mini World Cup is to follow on from the NZ Cricket Have a Go and Kids in Cricket programmes.
The Bay of Plenty Mini World Cup hits the road this week, with the Eastern Bay of Plenty schools in action at Rex Morepeth Park in Whakatane on Tuesday.
Sixteen teams have entered the Western Bay Mini World Cup at Blake Park on Wednesday, which always produces an action-packed day, before the regional Mini World Cup winner is crowned.
Last year, small Mount Maunganui school St Thomas More, playing under the banner of Ireland, defeated India (Tauranga Primary) in the title decider.
The Mini World Cup action switches to Rotorua on Thursday, when the Rotorua schools will battle to find their regional champions at Boord Park. Taupo will host the final regional tournament.
On November 30 the top two teams from the four regions will come together at Boord Park in Rotorua, to battle out the Baywide Mini World Cup championship. While in the past Western Bay teams have ruled supreme in the Baywide final, indications are that their supremacy will be under threat this year.