Canadian Coach Mike MacKay explains a fun drill for kids that incorporates fundamentals, strategy and teamwork.


Basketball Cricket


While attending the Physical Education conference in St. John’s, Newfoundland, I happened to see a brief portion of a presentation on Teaching Games for Understanding. It sparked my memory of an old cricket based game I used to play. I have always liked the concept in cricket where a player had to gamble on how many runs he/she could score. What follows are some basketball games that use the cricket concept. They work on quick and accurate passing and shooting, agility and of course some strategy and teamwork.

Each player has a home base (pylon). One player steps up the shooting spot to shoot. You decide where and what type of shot. In this example it is a foul shot. Off to the side is another receptacle that contains bean bags, or some kind of marker. You will have to ensure that this receptacle is an equal distance from the homes bases. It is best if it can move.

After the player shoots he/she starts to run between the bean bag receptacle and his/her home. Taking one bean bag at a time. He/she goes until the other players complete their task. The other players must race in from their homes and retrieve the ball (pass from out of bounds if it went in), The ball must now be passed to each player and a bucket scored. If the shooter is not at home or at the bean bag receptacle the last bean bag does not count.

This requires a strategy by the passers. You may designate a distance of the passes. I also recommend that it is not the same person to score each time.

For younger players I sometimes do not require a basket to be scored. They must pass the ball into a box or bucket on the floor. Use a soft ball when first playing with players at the
fundamental stage. Each player is given a chance to be the shooter.

You can also do the same game and have partners. Now the two players must work together to steal as many bean bags.

When all of the bean bags are gone you can now have the player steal from the other player’s home. You may want to put in rules as to how many times they can steal from the same home. Notice that the players had to make the passes outside the key and the shot also had to take place outside the key.

This game works best with the Fundamental and Learn to Train stages.

Here is a version I have used at the Train to Train and Train to Compete stages. Three players line up read to rebound the ball. Player #1 and #2 are partners and ready to run back and forth between the pylons.

On the shot the ball must be rebounded and reversed around the floor to be scored from the other side. If the ball went in the ball had to be inbounded. As a coach you get to designate the shot taken.

The first shot does not have to be a foul shot. Give some reward for making the shot. I have found that these players love to grab bean bags also.

The rebounding team must exit the three point line for all passes.