Match Report – 2nd XI vs Middleton CC – Away – Saturday 6th July 2019

Roving Reporter Neil Kennedy again….following a weekend off supporting Great Harwood Cricket Club’s Beer festival which I am pleased to say was a great success for the club…..not necessarily my liver!

On arrival at the ground, it appears we are going to have good weather so looking forward to a good game. The picturesque ground named Towncroft is one of my favourites that I have visited, and Middleton have played on this ground since the early 20th century so has some history.

As I tuck into my lunch, Marcus turns up for the game dropping his takeaway in the bin next to the ground (no frugal advertising in these reports but from a well known American Fast Food outlet known as the Golden Arches)….no wonder he is known as Burger Jr!

It’s all happening as Hamza turns up and sells his car in the car park…….game not started yet!

As I finish my lunch I notice a special guest in the Umpire hut…….thought Mr Kayley was playing tomorrow not today…

Anyway, on to the game…..Russ wins toss, and we bat first.

1st Innings:

Hamza and Harris to open.

Hamza 2 nice shots for 4. 14-0 off 3 overs. Making decent progress.

I make my way round the ground for my first lap….. News Alert:- Middleton groundsman looks tired…

Wicket:- Hamza bowled. 15-1. Joel Houldsworth in at 3. Unfortunately, he doesn’t last long…..Wicket:- Joel LBW. 16-2

Seb Whalley in next. We move the score on to 35-2 off 10 overs.

Wicket:- Seb out caught behind for 8. 47-3 Alex Kennedy in next. 71-3 off 20 overs.

Newsflash:- 3rd lap of the ground and good time to thank our scorer today Chris Hamer (or Burger Snr) who is settled in the scorebox with his scorer wife of the day….

110-3 off 26 overs……Harris batting really well and has moved on to 44 alongside Alex who is now on 26…..good partnership.

Wicket:- Alex out caught trying to drive one to mid-wicket (I think?!)…113-4. Paul Houldsworth in next.

Harris succeeds in getting his 50…well batted young man.

Wicket:- Harris bowled…..150-5. Captain Russ in next

Comedy Alert:- Run for single Paul shouts no…Russ turns back….then yes…Russ sets off again…where is the Benny Hill music when you need it.

A few wickets fall in the upcoming overs as follows;

Wicket:- Russ out caught. 181-5. Shovey in next. 7 overs left.

Wicket:- Paul bowled LBW. 197-7.

Wicket:- Ammer bowled. 214-8.

Wicket:- Abid out caught. 216-9.

Wicket:- Marcus bowled. 232 all out

We close the innings on a good score so hopefully we can defend this.

 

2nd Innings:

Shovey to open. Harris opens at the scoreboard

Early Wicket:- bowled Shovey caught Seb. 29-1. Good start.

Middleton move on to 42-1 off 7 overs……we need to get a breakthrough. Change of bowler as Marcus comes on for Shovey. Score 55-1.

Spectator view:- one of our supporters walks past and comments from the early overs bowled….”More extras than Ben Hur” 😊

Another change of bowler as Alex on for Harris.

Wicket:- caught & bowled Alex. 86-2.

Game proceeds and Middleton move to 105 at drinks. Run rate appears to be pretty level at this stage but their batters look set.

Change bowler as MC Ammer replaces  MC Hamer…….need to change some names for next report…highly confusing.

Newsflash:- as I take what must be my umpteenth lap of the ground I decide to visit the toilets at the other end of the ground…..unfortunately this turns into what I consider a bushtucker trial….

….thought Ant and Dec were going to turn up.

Change of bowler – Joel Houldsworth in for Alex.

Wicket:- bowled Ammer caught Paul Houldsworth in slips…….one handed…diving catch…full length to his right (that’s what Paul said anyway). 146-3.

Shot:-6 – their batsman gets 50. Well batted.

Change of bowler as Shovey comes back on for Ammer. 167-3

Wicket:- great throw from Abid in the field makes a direct hit. 193-4.

Wicket:- bowled Joel. 193-5. Got the man out who got 80. Come on boys.

Change bowler Abid for Shovey

Another Wicket:- bowled Joel caught Seb. 198-6. They need 20 off 5 overs…..

Wicket:- bowled Abid. 214-7. Change of bowler as Harris replaces Joel. They need 15 off 4 overs.

Unfortunately for us Middleton win with 3 overs spare.

Summary

This was a very close game, and we competed well, but in my view,  there were too many runs given in the field alongside some fielding errors. It was a great game to watch and we were all made very welcome by Middleton CC as their guests.

Player of Match 

Harris with his 65. Well batted

 

Neil Kennedy

Match Report – 1st XI vs East Lancashire CC – Cliffe Park – Sunday 30th June

Sunday 30th June saw us welcome East Lancs back to the Cliffe for the second time in three days, and having comprehensively beaten them in what was a dead rubber of a T20 game on Friday, hopes were high of a further victory, to get us back on track after last week’s annual wedgying at Haslingden.

This was the third and final day of our Beer Festival, which by all accounts had been a huge success. I’d been up for a couple of hours on the Saturday afternoon to catch some of our 3rd XI game, sampled a beer and listened to the afternoon singer Louis Devere who had been great, setting up on the balcony and singing as the game continued

I was impressed with the way it had all come together. Credit to the secretary for organising and all those involved in making it work. This will hopefully be the first of many such events and with the help of your feedback, we’ll refine and develop these into real community events.

Back to today; I arrived with the little man, who is becoming quite a regular now, about half an hour in. We were batting and had lost a couple of early wickets, Matt and Chris Oddie both out. This had brought Allan Armer and professional Thikshila de Silva together, who had commenced rebuilding. As we reached the clubhouse the score was 45-2 and the scoreboard was starting to look a bit brighter.

Bowling from one end for East Lancs was Phillip Aspinall, who likely had the shortest journey to the ground of all players. He had left us over the winter, and has been doing very well for East Lancs this year. He had picked up the early wicket of Chris, caught behind, but Armer and de Silva never looked troubled, steadily building a total as he and Bolton toiled their way through 10 overs each.

It was the change of bowling that saw the breakthrough, East Lancs professional Angelo Jayasinghe dropping one short, and Allan seeming to reach for it a bit, not getting all of it and picking out Aspinall at deep midwicket (cow).

Ethan Houldsworth (1) and Daniel Briggs (7) stuck around ably for a time, batting in support of de Silva who had passed 50 and was batting a little more freely. Nazakat Hussain cane in at 6 and fell LBW to Bolton (3-60) for just two runs and this triggered a mini collapse as Clifford (4), Basharat (0) and Maher (6) all fell cheaply. We had gone from 136-5 to 156-9 with Sanka 96* and in desperate need of someone to stick with him.

Enter Paul Newton. He saw out the over meaning Sanka would get a chance to reach three figures for the first time for GHCC.

A two off the third ball of the next over moved him to 98, and the field was moved in to encourage him to hit over the top. Sanka didn’t need any invitation to do this and went at the very next ball, only succeeding to sky the ball straight up towards the waiting mid on fielder…. Then this happened.

He deserved a life, having batted with such assurance, and following another two glorious Newton defensive prods, each met by huge cheers from the watching crowd, he pushed a single and strode through to 100.

From this point, he sought to have some fun. Ramp shots and reverse sweeps began to accompany the familiar cover drives and back foot punches, always measured with a single off the 4th or 5th ball of the over followed by another elaborate forward defence, and massive crowd cheer, from Newton.

By the time he holed out to long off to give Aspinall his second wicket, Sanka had reached a magnificent 141, with 18 fours and a six. The last wicket partnership was 52 and Newton had contributed perhaps the best 0* of all time.

We closed 208 all out.

2nd Innings

Such positivity at a remarkable innings somewhat masked the fact this was still a gettable score, and when East Lancs got off to a decent start, it was clear we would need to be at our best to come out on top. De Silva trapped Paul Turner LBW and Oddie’s decision to turn to the spin of Newton early proved successful as Aspinall (0) fell to a sharp legside catch by Armer, before professional Jayasinghe (4) was cleaned up by one that simply didn’t bounce.

Joe Bolton and Harry Caton dug in, and slowly began to recover the innings, but when Bolton (18) was also bowled by Newton, East lancs were 74-5 and struggling. Oddie brought himself on to bowl and proved as effective as Newton, his 10.3 overs yielding just 22 runs.

De Silva picked up the wicket of Caton, caught behind, and quickly followed this up by bowling Adam Bolton and Adeel Mohammed, both for ducks. The score was 86-8 and the game looked like being wrapped up early. Matt Oddie got his first wicket, Mark Bolton caught by Faheem Basharat, but  John Turner was batting well and fought his way to an impressive 43 with 6 fours and a six, before finding Nazakat Hussain at long off. East Lancs all out for 132.

12 points! A third victory in 5 games and, with Milnrow having lost at Bacup, we’re off the foot of the table as we reach the halfway stage.

Man of the match has to go to de Silva who not only hit one of the most entertaining innings I’ve seen in years, but followed this up with bowling figures of 4-13 from 13 overs with 6 maidens. Top effort.

A great weekend for the club, a successful festival, a T20 victory, and another League win seeing us slowly beginning to recover after what was a terrible start to the season.

Next week we welcome Middleton to the Cliffe, note that the game is being played on Saturday owing to cup commitments for some clubs on Sunday.

Here’s to having another victory to report on.

On to the next one

 

ALR

Match Report – 1st XI vs Nelson CC – Cliffe Park – 16th June 2019

After two straight away games which gave us our first win of 2019 at Rawtenstall, followed by a narrow derby day defeat at Rishton, we returned to the Cliffe on Sunday feeling positive as we welcomed Nelson.

Another week of almost incessant rain had abated, and the ever impressive drainage system had done its job, meaning although showers were forecast throughout the afternoon, it was likely we would get a game in.

Team News

Captain Matt Oddie and VC Allan Armer were unavailable for this game, meaning call ups for Zeain Ali and Chris Oddie, who would keep wicket. Chairman Stuart Maher would captain for the day.

1st Innings

As ever, we lost the toss, and were invited to bat. Matt Bunn, who has looked increasingly impressive in his run of consistent appearances, reprised his opening role, today joined by Chris Oddie.

And in what is becoming a recurring theme, we got off to a solid if unspectacular start. The pair resolute in defence and rotating the strike well whilst taking every opportunity to score against Nelson’s openers Bradley and the particularly impressive Thomson.

Runs were hard to come by, Nelson’s field placings were unorthodox but very effective and indicative that they knew their bowlers well, however as Bunn and Oddie got used to the conditions they started to find a few gaps and the score began to build. They passed 50 before Chris was caught behind for 23 in Thomson’s 10th over. This brought in professional Thikshila de Silva, on the back of concurrent scores of 82 and 91.

But it was Bunn who looked to take the game to Nelson, noticeably playing much more aggressively instantly once joined by Sanka. This didn’t last long however, he was caught to a fine diving catch by the Nelson professional Sanjika Ridma attempting to punch the ball over the legside infield. He scored 26.

Zeain joined Sanka and struggled in the face of spin from both ends. Nazir and Ridma tying down the run rate. Indeed this pressure caused the big wicket of de Silva to fall, run out attempting a second run to the sweeper on the legside boundary. Watching from the balcony we had the over before noted the fielder had a ‘good arm’, and he used it here, pinning the ball into the keeper’s gloves, who did the rest.

Faheem fell for 2 runs, and then as the rain came, Zeain also went, for an extremely hard earned 4. And suddenly our fine start had become 81-5. Another couple of maidens were dug out by Jack and Briggsy, before the umpires took us off.

Rain Delay

A mini monsoon threatened to end proceedings there and then, but just as quickly as it arrived, it cleared up and following a few minutes of Bunny running up and down with a sponge roller, we were back on.

5 overs lost – 10 left to look to set a manageable target. This would, on the face of it, be a challenge from 81-5, but analysis had shown Nelson’s games this season had shown scores of around 100-120, so we felt anything over this would give us a good chance.

We passed 40 overs and were still short of 100, but then a big straight six from Briggs off Nazir set us going. He fell, bringing in Kaz to partner Jack, and the scoring rate started to pick up. Ridma bowled out his overs with one still to bowl from the Dog and Otter end and Nelson’s decision to bring back the seam bowling of Bradley proved costly; jack despatching him into the car park three times, before sneaking a single to retain the strike for the last over.

He tried to give Nazir the same treatment first ball of the last over, but missed and was bowled. A potentially vital 34 had moved the score to 135-7.

Clifford joined Masood for the last 5 deliveries and the pair managed to add another 9 runs including a remarkable three to a dug out Yorker which didn’t get off the wicket, yet had two unsuccessful and poorly backed up runout attempts.

We ended on 144-7, with our friends DLS granting us another 5 for the lost overs. Nelson would require 150 from their 45.

Tea break

Following a hastily arranged Mikey Perrin tea (thanks Mikey), the players were back out, refreshed and fancying our chances.

2nd Innings

An early LBW for Sanka saw Crotty fall for a duck, but Khurram Nazir and Lewis Bradley both took the game to us, each hitting Faheem into the car park. Faheem was replaced by Maher and immediately he had the dangerous Nazir caught to a brilliant one-handed diving catch from Sanka, Nelson 37-2 in the 10th over.

Sanka was proving unplayable at the other end, and he clean bowled Lewis Bradley for 13 in the next over. 37-3.

The talented Pettinger was joined by professional Ridma, but with Sanka flying and Stuart tying the batsmen down at the other end, the run rate slowed dramatically. They added a further 9 before Ridma got a leading edge to a Maher delivery, the ball looping up and seeming set to fall safe around level with the stumps short of what would have been mid off. But out of nowhere came Sanka; running in from cover, he full length Klinsmann dived, taking the ball inches from the ground at the very end of his reach. Chris Oddie later said it was ‘the greatest catch he’d ever seen live’. Whails it was admittedly very special, he’s clearly never seen a 3rd XI game with ALR at gully.

Runs continued to be hard to come by, and when Jack Bradley (one of five Bradley’s in today’s Nelson team) was run out by some fine work from Zeain, Nelson were 57-5 and struggling.

Sanka completed 10 overs with unbelievable figures of 2-7 with 5 maidens, and was replaced by Kaz Masood as the skies darkened. Rain was due, and the Nelson batsmen knew it. We’ve had some work done on our scoreboard over the winter, meaning not only does it now work, it also has a live DLS par score showing. This showed that Nelson were some way behind.

Pettinger and Thomson looked to attack where they could, but Masood and Maher, aided by a markedly improved fielding display, kept the rate well below the par score, and when the rains came after 24 overs, Nelson were 70-5, with the par score 86.

In such a strong position, our lads were hoping to get back out there to seek to bowl out our opposition, but unlike the earlier shower, the rain this time filled in and showed no sign of abating. The umpires gave it every chance, but at 7pm the decision was made to call it. Captains shook hands and we picked up our second victory of the season.

GHCC WIN

10 points! We now have 2 wins in 3 and whilst we find ourselves still bottom of the table but we’re no longer cut off.

image courtesy of Nigel Stockley / lancashireleague.com

Summary

Another impressive performance, and one that showed we have the capability to post a defendable score on a day Sanka didn’t go big with the bat. Sanka really was a class apart second innings though, two remarkable catches and his bowling unplayable throughout. He really is looking to have found his feet having now adapted to conditions in the UK.

One note – Apologies to any visitors who found there was no food available on Sunday. Our caterer was called away last minute for a family emergency and we were unable to find alternative provision.

Next Week

Next week sees T20 away at Church on Friday, a FOURTH attempt to play our Worsley Cup game at Clitheroe on Saturday and then a trip to Haslingden on Sunday. Here’s to another victory or three to report on.

 

ALR

Match Report – 2nd XI vs Nelson CC – Away – 16th June 2019

A bit of a shock to have a game on today following the recent Monsoon season. I have packed the car with every variation of coats and jackets I could put my hands on.

Today we make the short journey up the M65 to Nelson. We need to get back to winning ways following last 2 poor defeats. As we arrive at the ground the weather appears fine with breaks of sunshine through the clouds…..

So, what can I tell you about Nelson……..well obviously the birthplace of Horatio…….albeit from the ground you can’t see the docks where he would have parked his boat. The story goes he lost his eye in nearby Colne (or was it Corsica – not sure). Anyway, let’s hope our “Voyage” is worth the while…..and we “Sail” home with a “HMS” victory…………as we “wave” goodbye to our run of defeats. A few stumpings from Ben “Jolly” Rogers would be good as well.

We win toss and Captain Paul Houldsworth (in Russ’ absence) decides to bowl.

1st Innings:

Bottom Whiteheads to open bowling from Scoreboard end, whilst 3rd Team Captain Ste Schofield opens from clubhouse end.

Early Wicket:- bowled Ste. 23-1 off 5 overs.

Chance:- to slips, unlucky as a difficult chance to Andy Brown. Nelson move their score on to 36-1 off 10 overs. Some good bowling at both ends from Ste and Tanny.

Change of bowler as Ethan Houldsworth comes in for Tanny.

Another change of bowler As Alex Kennedy replaces Ste.

Wicket:- bowled Alex stumped Ben as the batsman impersonates someone off Strictly Come Dancing doing the Mumba down the wicket. Score is 59-2

We reach drinks (which is unusual of late as the only fluids I have seen is the rain tipping down. Score – 87-2.

Captain Paul mixes up our attack with another change of bowler as MC Ammer comes on for Ethan.

Fitness Alert:- Ste is like a magnet to the ball today putting in some miles in the field….fielding really well.

Wicket:- bowled Ammer caught Ethan. Score has moved to 114-3. Change of bowler as Joel on for Alex.

Wicket:- bowled Joel caught…..yes you guessed it…..Ste. 123-4

Weather Alert:- Yes……Rain starts to come down. The game continues as the players stay out there….hopefully only a shower….change of bowler as Harris on for Ammer. 156-4

Change bowler from the clubhouse end as Tanny on for Joel. Their batsman having a good knock and with 6 overs left moves on to his half century. Well batted (the round of applause is deafening from the 3 people watching). Heard later he got £1.22 in his collection……will lend him 8p to get a pint of Orange😊.

Wicket:- the Nelson young batsman out caught & bowled Tanny. Well batted for 22. Score creeps up to 195-5.

Wicket:- bowled Tanny. 195-6…..he would have been on a hat trick but end of over.

Wicket:- bowled Harris caught behind. 195-7

Wicket:- LBW bowled Harris.

Nelson finish on 197-8.

Good performance especially at the end and some really strong fielding.

2nd Innings:

Ben Rogers and Alex Kennedy to open batting.

Unfortunately the early partnership is broken as Wicket:- Ben out. In comes Andy Brown at 3. Score is 7-1.

Wicket:- Alex caught behind frustratingly as looked set. Score 29-2. Ethan in at 4.

A good partnership forming with Andy and Ethan as we move score on to 43-2 off 15 overs.

Wicket:- Andy bowled. Score on 44-3. Harris Masood in next.

The new pair don’t last long together as they go for a very tight run…..Wicket:- Ethan run out. Score 50-4. Mr Happy in next.

Wicket:- Joel (Mr Unhappy) bowled. Score 60-5….albeit we do have a good chance here with the overs left.

Captain Paul in next. Another strong innings here could lead us to victory.

As drinks break arrives score moved to 62-5.

Hate to say it but above us the clouds appear to be closing in again…..Score 84-5….20 overs left. Need 114 off the remaining overs.

Captain Houldsworth starting to hit out….6….and a 4.

Wicket!- Harris bowled. Score 112-6. Shovey in next as the rain starts to form.

Unfortunately, rain stops play with score on 114-6.

Various conversations now being had with various scores being called out as everyone tries to calculate the Duckworth Lewis (thought this was an Estate Agents!) Marcus (our scorer) informs me we are behind the run rate.

30 minutes on……..Doesn’t look like we will get back on.

Captain Paul shakes the hand of the Nelson Captain as Game called off. According to our scorer Marcus we get 4 points as we were behind Run rate.

Summary

Unfortunately, the weather ruins another weekend of cricket for our lads. I truly felt if the rain hadn’t arrived we would have gone on to win this game.

Difficult to pick a player of the match, but will give it to Ste Schofield for his tireless efforts in the field. Well done Ste.

On to next week……

Neil Kennedy

Match Report – 2nd XI vs Milnrow CC – Cliffe Park – 19th May 2019

Sunday saw us welcome Milnrow to The Cliffe.

Having won the toss and (not) surprisingly opted to bat, in went Santa and Dr Ali to open.

A good solid start with some exquisite cover driving from Santa before the doctor left the surgery for 20 odd.

In came Ethan and the scoreboard ticked over nicely before Santa had to leave for the North Pole.

In strode the skipper, but soon after Ethan was out, quickly followed first ball by Seb, leaving old timer Houldsworth to face the hat trick ball. A short long hop was hit straight at the fielder who very kindly let it go through his hands for 4.

Russ didn’t last long hitting instead of eating a pie down cow shot’s throat.

Wickets fell regularly until the league’s finest number 11 Bottom Whiteheads came in to take the score past 250.

Harwood’s bowlers then bowled their usual array of wides and long hops to get Milnrow off to a decent start before regular…ish wickets fell leaving them needing 10 an over.

Despite some lusty slogging they fell 60 odd shy of the target leaving us with 10 points, though if the skipper could catch at slip it might have been 12.

Image by Mick Shore

Match Report – 1st XI vs Milnrow CC – away – 19th May 2019

Matt Oddie won the toss on a nice day in Milnrow and decided to bat. The two Oddie brothers are to open the batting.

Something you should know about Milnrow; well Milnrow is the birth place of  actress Anna Friel. For those who don’t know Anna, she was one of the actresses involved in the first ever lesbian kiss, on Brookside in 1994. Local knowledge would correct this to the first such kiss before the watershed, and we know this because there was a blue plaque outside a house on entry to the ground.

3 overs gone and both Oddie brothers are out, as is Harris. The ball looks to be moving around a lot early doors.

5 overs gone are we’re really having to work hard on a tough seaming wicket, pro gone; caught! Jack next to go.

Allan Armer looking like he’s the one to stop this ship from sinking fast, but a loose shot from Allan brings myself to the crease with the score on a remarkable 36-6.

A quick conversation with my son who’s batting at the other end tells me that this lads bowling inswingers. Not on this occasion as the ball goes the other way. Wickets again began to tumble, myself then Briggs both out. Only Faheem Basharat offered any real resistance, bringing a very positive and youthful approach to our innings with our top score of 17. Our final score was 68 all out.

With a very small score to defend we new we had to take everything that came our way. We didn’t! We took 3 wickets including their pro first bowl, but Milnrow got to there score quite comfortably in the end after just 16 overs. Looking back at the game I thought young Basharat batted and bowled very well and for future reference when we return to this ground next season, the wicket went to sleep very quickly in the second innings

Local knowledge would suggest that people bowl first here, but it’s was new territory for us and we will learn from today.

Match Report – 3rd XI vs Lowerhouse CC – Cliffe Park – 18th May 2019

We return home this week after our visit to Rawtenstall last week, and entertain Lowerhouse at The Cliffe. As I do what is a regular occurrence of a “Power Walk” up Cliffe Lane, the day is overcast. As I arrive on the ground, and due to a last minute issue, our wicket the last one on the square….just next to Westcliffe!! Long walks to the bar today.

Before I comment on today’s fixture, I have a correction to last week’s match report to make everyone aware of as not sure I interpreted the incident as I should have done. That catch Leachy dropped was a really difficult one…not just any old catch….but a really difficult one….it travelled at pace…a really difficult one……never seen a catch that difficult……a really difficult one. Hope that makes up for it Leachy.

Team News:- 

Ste is a last minute drop out so in comes young Nihaal Basharat for his senior debut. Good luck young man. (I must apologise as did have a picture taken for Nihaal, but the quality wasn’t the best).

Leachy also becomes Captain Leachy for the day.

Great Harwood win toss and decide to bat.

Guest appearance Zeain as umpire…..looks like he has either lost his Ice Cream Van…..or he has qualified as a Doctor…..either way thanks for supporting the team Dr Zeain umpiring today.

1st Innings:

Ben Rogers and Joel Houldsworth to open batting. The game begins…….but unfortunately a very early Wicket:- as Joel bowled. 3-1. Shak in at 3.

The Lowerhouse opening bowling attack look decent, which means a cagey start as runs are few and far between.

Incident:- Shak hit by thrower on the elbow…he goes down in pain…..luckily we do have Dr Zeain on hand to go and take a look. Unfortunately means Shak has to retire hurt for the time being……Tom Newton replaces Shak. 13-1.

Our score moves to 21-1….with only 3 runs coming off the bat….18 extras to press…..Extras is usually a high scorer when we play….we should sign him on.

Wicket:- LBW Thomas. 39-2. In comes MC Hammer…..we are ready for some Gas.

Wicket:- Ben out LBW. 58-3

Shovey in next….but doesn’t last long as he is out caught behind. 58-4

Captain Leachy arrives at the crease. Wicket:- Leachy out caught. 60-5. In comes Abid…can he stick around for a while and support MC Hammer. Shot:- Ammer hits bowler for 6……..another 6…..then a sublime 4. He isn’t finished there as he hits another shot for 6.

Wicket:- Ammer’s progress is halted as he is caught out. 89-6. Good innings off not so many balls again.

News Alert:- Lowerhouse have brought their team manager again walking round barking instructions. A 3rd team with a team manager…..maybe we need one?!

Wicket:- Shak  who has returned to the crease to carry on his innings post his injury, is then duly fired by Dr Zeain LBW. 88-7. The two exchange looks at the wicket at the decision.

Wicket:- Abid caught. 98-8. In comes Marcus to join Alex. Unfortunately have a short spell together Marcus is run out…probably not a run….Nihaal in last for his debut with the bat. Score on 103-9.

Both players try and keep our innings going and play some nice shots until Wicket:- Alex bowled. 103 all out.

We struggled today with the bat to get going and unfortunately it was left to the “young guns” at the end of the innings to try and save the day….pity we didn’t have a couple of experienced batters down the order to try and bat through with the kids.

 

2nd Innings:

Joel to open bowling from the Dog & Otter end whilst Abid to open at the Scoreboard end.

Early exchanges are tight as Lowerhouse start to gather runs on the board. Interesting viewpoint in that they have fielded a few players from last weeks 2nd fixture. This could define the result.

Change bowler:- Alex replaces Joel whilst Leachy replaces Abid from Scoreboard end.

Wicket:- bowled Leachy LBW. 48-1. We are off the mark but still a lot to do.

Change bowler as Nihaal comes on for his bowling debut for Alex. The score has now moved to 74-1. Again their 3rd team manager is patrolling the perimeter of the pitch…..

Unfortunately, this now becomes the shortest Innings Report I think I have done as the game quickly comes to a conclusion…….Game over. Is it because the Cup Final is on and everyone ants to watch it…..hopefully not.

In Summary

Not much else to say other than Congratulations to Nihaal for his debut in the Senior Side. Player of the Match goes to Ammer for his quickfire score as he tried to rally our side. Lowerhouse with a well-deserved win – Congratulations. We couldn’t seem to “Build” any momentum…..good time to mention one of our club sponsors;

Our 3rd team have no game next week so on to the week after when we can hopefully get back to winning ways.

 

Neil Kennedy

Want to play 1st XI Cricket? We Want You! Indoor Nets start this week

Great Harwood Cricket Club is actively seeking ambitious players to join our club with a view to developing them into established Lancashire League 1st XI cricketers.

  • Do you feel unvalued at your existing club?
  • Is the present strength of your club making it difficult to break into the 1st XI, despite your best efforts?

If this sounds like you, then we’d like to hear from you!

Great Harwood Cricket Club

Our present senior teams are going through a transitional period, with the older players keen to make way for the next generation.

Our junior section is developing many promising young cricketers who will no doubt go on to establish themselves in our 1st XI over the coming years, but we have immediate opportunities throughout our 1st XI for players of an appropriate standard. Our long-serving senior players are happy to make way for younger, talented and hard-working replacements.

So if you want to join a club with structured coaching, co-ordinated and delivered by an ECB Level 3 coach with the support of many other qualified coaches, to develop your game and become a 1st XI regular, then we could be the club for you.

Our Winter Nets commence this Thursday, 24th January 2019 at St Christopher’s High School, Queen Road West, Accrington between 8.00 p.m. & 9.30 p.m. for the next 11 weeks.

The club’s focus is on improving you both as a cricketer and on a personal level, to produce 1st XI cricketers. Players of all abilities are welcome to attend.

We hope you consider joining our existing group of hard-working lads.

If you would like to speak to us, call 07956 042615 or contact us via info@gtharwoodcc.co.uk

Notice of Annual General Meeting – Tuesday 12th February 2019

Our AGM will take place on Tuesday 12th February 2019 commencing at 7.30 p.m. in our clubhouse.

We hope all members will be able to join us to review the last 12 months and hear the announcement of our plans for 2019 and beyond.

If you require a copy of the Agenda for the meeting or a copy of the club’s annual accounts in advance of the meeting, please contact us: info@gtharwoodcc.co.uk

Groundsman wanted for our much-admired cricket pitch

The club has sadly lost the commitment and services of our groundsmen Niall & Cameron Holt, whose full time employment and educational commitments mean that they cannot dedicate the time they would wish to continue to procure the wonderful facilities they provided in 2018.

The investment on our playing facilities over the past decade has been ably-supported and maintained by a team of hard-working, dedicated groundstaff who have given up their time on a paid and/or voluntary basis during that time.

Many of these former staff are still on hand to help on a part-time and piecemeal basis, but now we someone to take over responsibility for the management of our playing facilities and the preparation of our wickets.

We have all the equipment needed, and help and expertise from previous groundstaff is available to support you in the role. Full training can be offered together with membership of appropriate associations to give you the support you need to take on the role.

We would like to hear from anyone in Great Harwood or the surrounding area interested in this rewarding role.

An honorarium will be arranged, but this job is very much a hobby and a labour of love. It would suit someone who has an interest in cricket and time to spare each week, particularly over the summer season running April to September.

They will be able to enjoy working on their own terms in a fantastic rural setting, and have the regard of maintaining our reputation as a club with fantastic crickets wickets and playing facilities.

If you are interested in the role and would like to find out more, please contact us by email info@gtharwoodcc.co.uk or by telephone 01254 880834.

Chairman’s New Year Message for 2019

Hello to you all. I trust that you had a wonderful Christmas and may I wish you and your family a Happy & Prosperous New Year for 2019.

As we move towards 2019, may I take the opportunity to thank all members, supporters, players and visitors to our club throughout 2018. We were blessed with an exceptional summer, and whilst the performances of our senior teams did not meet the high expectations we set ourselves, our blossoming junior teams were again extremely successful across the age groups. Long may that continue!

I’d also like to thank all our sponsors and advertisers without whom we would not be in a position to provide the facilities we have on offer, both for playing and watching cricket.

I’d also like to thank our Club Welfare Officers, and the management committee for all their hard work which to most goes unnoticed and by many, is badly under-appreciated.

But as we look towards the New Year, I want to share with you a little about what this great club of ours can offer each and every one of you.

New Year Message

This club is here to provide you all with wonderful facilities to watch and play cricket. But I want to share with you exactly what this club can offer you, if you properly embrace it.

This year was my 30th year at this club; some members, both young and much older, are just starting out, whilst others have been here much longer than I have, as players, coaches and club officials.

I have been fortunate enough to receive excellent coaching when I was young, and have played with so many people I now call my closest friends. It was an honour to take my 750th league wicket for the club this season.

But it is not just in playing cricket which this club has provided for me for the last three decades. It has given me so much more.

Over those years the club has undergone so many fantastic changes, benefitted from so much investment, and so many good people have given their time for the benefit of others.

For 15 years I have been formally involved in helping this club off the field to thrive both on and off it. But it has helped me in so many other ways. It’s given me so much pleasure to represent this club on the field, but I have learnt so much in helping out off the field.

When you volunteer at a club like this, you receive so much in return.

For the younger players and members, perhaps those coming towards the stage in their life where they need to decide their future careers; volunteering here looks great on your CV. It certainly helped me get ahead in life; my involvement here was a big plus on my CV when I applied for my first job, a job at a business I now own with my partners.

It has helped me learn new skills I would never have learned elsewhere. I’m a pen pusher by trade but have found myself building gardens, filling potholes and scarifying wickets to name just the tip of the iceberg.

It always feels good to learn something new, and then to do it well.

It feels good to give up your time for something that benefits many other people, as well as yourself. It really does.

Until you have given up your time, expertise or knowledge and helped towards the greater good, you will never know just how good it feels.

I am one of the youngest cricket club chairmen around, likely the youngest in this club’s history. And like me, the majority of our committee have demanding full time jobs, families to support, children and grandchildren to care for. But they still find the time to give what they can and provide for this wonderful club.

Everyone on our management committee here are wonderful, wonderful people. They give up countless hours for everyone’s benefit; we all give what we can, but importantly, we all enjoy it immensely.

It is unbelievably rewarding to do something regularly that helps others. And, if you want to, we are happy for you to join us and share that brilliant feeling.

You may have some free time. Your parents might have free time. Grandparents. Uncles. Cousins. Everyone is welcome here.

This is Great Harwood Cricket Club. It does give you a place to play cricket, of course, one of the best places in fact.

But, if you allow it to, it can give you so much more.

So if you can offer some free time, perhaps a few hours a month, or maybe a little more, we have lots of vacancies for volunteers. Keep looking on this site for details of roles we are looking for support.

Perhaps your New Year’s Resolution could be to give a little back to this great Club of ours. If you can, it will be greatly appreciated.

Match Report 1st XI vs Clitheroe – Home – Saturday 18th August 2018

So to the first of two consecutive August double header weekends, with Clitheroe and Crompton the opposition. First up, Clitheroe on Saturday, with the 1st XI at home.

August is holiday season, and today’s line up omitted such regular names as Patrick Swanney, Allan Armer, Paul Newton and captain Paul Houldsworth. Such holiday issues also affect clubs off the field too, and 1995-1997 2nd XI scorer Richard Law-Riding had been brought out of retirement at the cost of ‘a few Morettis’

Only that didn’t happen, unlike in 1995-1997, he now has a job, and whilst present, he was unable to take up his position at the start owing to some urgent task that needed sorting. Moretti on hold, and we needed a scorer….

I arrived at the ground pondering whether to sit on the balcony or commence a few gentle laps of the field. Instead within 5 minutes I have a laptop and a scorebox to commandeer. I protest that I need to leave briefly in an hour, but with a distinct lack of available alternatives, I’ve got the job. Woop.

In came two players for Lancashire League debuts, Mark Leach and, having returned to the field for a T20 game the previous week following several years’ absence, Matthew Houldsworth.

Cloudy, overcast conditions meant the game was able to start on time, with Stuart Maher losing the toss and, after a week of persistent rain, we were predictably asked to bat.

Richard Shovelton opened with Matt Oddie, and with Marcus Sharp and Fawad Alam bowling in conditions extremely favourable for the fielding side, we found runs extremely hard to come by. That said, in the seven overs I watched from the box before tagging in Chairman/Captain and now Scorer Stuart for a stint scoring (village we know but needs must – I did genuinely have to leave briefly) there were more overs on the board than runs.

On my return, both Shovey and Matt were out, and the score had crawled forward, and we were into the 30s as the drinks break approached.

Phil Aspinall (39) and Ash (45) dug in, seeing off the opening bowlers and picking up runs where the few opportunities to do so arose. But when their wickets fell in quick succession, followed by the attacking Jack first ball, we were 104-5 with only 6 overs to go. Sohail Ali was out trying to force the issue, but Chris Oddie and Matt Houldsworth scrambled a further few runs, and we closed on a rather modest 129-6.

Having helped roll and sweep the wicket at tea, I’m despatched again to the scorebox. Brother Richard had taken over midway through the first innings but again had work business to attend to. Clitheroe began the run chase, with Aspinall and Maher doing all they could to defend our total in (marginally) improving batting conditions.

Lang and Mulligan saw off the pair, taking Clitheroe to 35 before the former skied one off the bowling of Zeain Ali, his first 1st XI league wicket (he did get the Rishton professional out in the T20 last year). This brought the Clitheroe captain Dewhurst to the crease and he and Mulligan broke the back of the chase. By the time he was out, to a great catch by Ash off the bowling of Leach, another maiden 1st XI wicket, the score was 90. Professional Alam came in and saw Clitheroe home, Mulligan reaching an impressive 50 in the process of hitting the winning runs.

So no points, a disappointing result but not entirely unexpected against last year’s champions with several senior players missing. There were a few positives to take from the game, the return of Matt (who you’ll still never run out) and wickets for Zeain and Mark, and plenty to ponder ahead of the next weekend.

Oh and we need to get the scoreboard fixed – we’re already on it – apologies to anybody it annoyed, the issues were beyond our control