The Hodgman Liberal Government has a goal for Tasmania to have the healthiest population in the country by 2025, so that is why I am proud to support Play Cricket Week (August 22-29) and locally launch the National Cricket Census results.

This is supported by our recently released Healthy Tasmania Strategic Plan, which has a focus on targeting obesity rates.

Taking part in organised sports is a great way to keep up fitness and maintain a healthy weight while fostering social connectedness.

Cricket is one of our great national pastimes with a strong history in Tasmania.

And this week is all about highlighting cricket as a way to encourage everyone to get outside and have a hit and run, whether it be in the backyard or on the sporting field.

Within Tasmania, more than 38,000 people played cricket in the past financial year – an 8 per cent growth on 2014-2015 with a particular increase in the number of junior and female players.

Across the state 59 per cent of all cricket participants are aged between 5 and 12 and female participation has grown by 15 per cent in the past year.

In a breakdown of statistics, 34,449 individuals play outdoor cricket, an increase of 6 per cent, while 3756 are playing the game indoors, up 25 per cent.

And it’s great to see more women and girls getting involved in the sport. A total of 10,883 females hit the ground in the past year, up 15 per cent, while among girls aged 5 to 12, there has been a 20 per cent increase.

Among all junior players in the Milo T20Blast format, there has been a 22 per cent increase.

Whether you play cricket on parliament lawns or your front lawns, it is well placed to help build a healthier, more active community and encourage good habits from a young age.

I encourage everyone to consider playing cricket this season and sign up to a local club this week, to help Tasmanians get and stay healthy.

Visit for more information on local clubs and indoor cricket centres.

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