What’s it all about?
Stoolball is an exciting team sport, similar to Twenty20 cricket.
Anyone can play stoolball. You don’t have to be really fit to play, and it’s a great way to make friends. Children start playing at around 8 or 9, and some people play league stoolball right into their 70s. There are lots of ladies-only teams, as well as mixed teams with six men and five women.
Two teams compete to score the most runs. There are two wickets standing at shoulder height, about 14 metres apart. The bats are willow, with a round face and a long, sprung handle. The ball, small and hard, is bowled underarm towards one wicket.
Just like cricket, batsmen score by hitting the ball into the field and running between the two wickets. They can also hit the ball beyond a boundary line to score 4 or 6. Batsmen can be bowled, caught or run-out, or even body-before-wicket.
In the mixed game there are rules to ensure everyone gets a fair chance: half the overs must be bowled by women and half by men, and usually there’s a man and a woman batting together.
Stoolball can be played both competitively and recreationally on any grass area; all you need is bats, balls and wickets. If you would like to start a team or play stoolball in your School, equipment can often be borrowed from Stoolball England.
Stoolball England provides a structure for the sport and is responsible for coordinating leagues and friendlies across South-East England.
Throughout the South East there are both Ladies and Mixed teams with a few having separate junior teams for the younger audience.
For a list of clubs in Kent visit the Stoolball England website