OWZAT. A village cricket club has come up with a novel way of getting sponsors to stump up cash.
Whitburn Cricket Club, which celebrated its 150th anniversary at the beginning of June, said it is always looking at innovative ways to help boost commercial revenues.
Now, it is offering advertising space on the stumps it uses in matches.
Although commonplace in the domestic and international professional game, bespoke stump advertising is more rare at village cricket level.
And so far it has proved to be a success, with Whitburn restaurant Mamma Mia’s, which is above the Jolly Sailor pub, getting its name on the stumps for Whitburn’s games.
Committee member at the club Frank Turns said: “The response has been very good.
“Local butchers, restaurants, and sport shops etc are queuing up to get in on the action.
“Sponsorship can be from as little as two weeks to a whole season.”
Chris Ellison, owner of cricket-mad manufacturing firm Crown Sports, was one of the first to advertise.
Mr Ellison said: “On-pitch advertising is more effective than, for example, a half page in a programme.
“Cricket stumps are at the centre of the action.”
It has also been revealed that the club is set to welcome the cameras of Sky Sports after being selected for a programme looking at the amateur game.
The team is expected to be filmed for a “Club Life” feature later this month.
Producers say they will film a typical training session as well as the club’s match against Philadelphia CC.
It will then be shown during break in play at one of the forthcoming England v South Africa Test matches.
Mr Turns said: “It’s massive for us.
“I’ve seen other Club Life clips and they usually do a bit of background on the club before interviewing the key members from the current day.
“I’ve been told it’s also shown abroad as well, but even if it’s just shown domestically, that’s brilliant.
“It will be great for us to get that kind of exposure.”
For more information about potential sponsorship, email Mr Turns at FrankTurns@Whitburncc.org.uk.
OTHER famous advertising stunts include US astronauts trialling the Coca Cola Space Can aboard the space shuttle Challenger, in July 1985.
At this year’s European Championships former Sunderland star Nicklas Bendtner was fined £80,000 for celebrating a goal for his country Denmark by revealing the name bookmamker Paddy Power on his underwear.
At the 2010 football World Cup, more than 30 women wearing organge minidresses were arrested at a game between the Netherlands and Denmark over claims they were advertising for Bavaria beer, an unofficial sponsor of the tournament.