Friday, 29 July 2016

A bit more about the Under 17 Championship

posted by John Winn

Before I am accused of being over parochial I thought I should pen an update on the other three 'A' groups in the Under 17 championship.

In group 2 there is all to play for between Warwickshire and Northants. Currently the Bears have a five point lead over their midlands rivals, each having one match left to play. Northants will take on Staffs on Tuesday at Desborough while on the same day Warwickshire face Notts at Edgbaston Foundation Ground, a renovated ground described by Tony in his posting last month, 'Historic Ground brought back to life',  There are a few ifs and buts here but bottom line says Northants must win.

No ifs and buts in the other two divisions, the outcome of which is already decided with Surrey and Somerset the winners.

A day at Weetwood

posted by John Winn

Those of us who can remember Phyllosan but might struggle to recall what if fortified turned out in good numbers at Weetwood on Tuesday for the first day of an Under 17 match with Lancashire the visitors. At one point the hospitality box (below) was full and from the cheap seats we looked on in envy as lunch was served. Seated nearby was a gentleman from Lancashire who assisted with identification of his team's players. He was also able to inform anybody interested how to get from Leeds to Accrington by bus, although worryingly not how to get back, and identified the winner of the Canadian Open Golf. Renaissance man indeed.

For many the county under 17 competition is part of cricket's hidden agenda but with patience it can be followed at For the championship there are eight groups with five county teams in  each and Tuesday's match was within Division 1A where in addition to Yorkshire and Lancashire, Durham, Derbyshire and Cheshire also compete.

On a decent enough morning, better for watching than in the last week's high temperatures, Lancashire won the toss and chose to bat. They lost two early wickets, one to a run out and the other , in the words of the Lancashire coach a  'given out'. Then followed a partnership of 116 for the third wicket between Thomas Billington and Sam Oldham. The afternoon, for which we were joined by John Rex, went Yorkshire's way until Red Rose skipper Nathan Jones boosted the later order with 59 to see his side to 255 all out.

The full scorecard appeared on the website last night and an interesting feature is the presence of 'Unsure of Yorkshire' who despite effecting a run out, scoring 22 runs and taking four wickets remains a man of mystery. Yesterday's rain ensured a draw but that was sufficient to send Yorkshire top, albeit by only two points from Lancashire and with Durham only a further point away. With sixteen points for a win such margins are easily overcome. Durham and Yorkshire meet at Stockton CC on Tuesday while Lancashire and Derbyshire meet at Northern on the same day. Cheshire have completed their matches. The winners will progress to semi finals and then a final at Arundel on 17th to 19th August.

The ECB  also run a cup competition for this age group with the finals day being at Kibworth CC Leicestershire on Sunday June 21st.

Monday, 25 July 2016

Sessay ensure a long journey

posted by John Winn

During the hot weather of last week every weather forecast mentioned the possibility of showers,'heavy at times', but with the exception of ten minute sharp burst on Wednesday morning I saw no rain throughout the week. Yesterday, however my luck ran out for the Village Cup semi final between Sessay and Cumbrian visitors Cleator was plagued by a series of brief showers. Although none of these were particularly heavy they caused several interruptions to play.

Both these teams are past winners of the competition, Sessay in 2010, Cleator in 2013, and with the two sides having met twice before and the score at one all a very good crowd had come in anticipation of a keen contest, as many if not more from West Cumbria than from the locality. With exact timing the first shower delayed the start for 25 minutes when Sessay, who had surprised the visitors by choosing to bat, began their innings. Opening the bowling for Cleator was Darren Clark, brother of Jordan who in 2013 hit six sixes in an over for Lancashire II at North Marine Road, also in the side yesterday was their father, Ian. All six bowlers used by Cleator maintained a grip on Sessay that saw the run rate struggle to get much above three and whilst several of their fielders would be in the 13 stone division if they were Cumberland wrestlers there were few errors and one excellent catch to get rid of Sessay dangerman, Simon Mason.

Towards the end of the Sessay innings and after the fourth rain break the shackles were finally cast aside and the acceleration enabled the home team to reach 199 for 7 off their 40 overs. One loose over from opening bowler David Blackwell, who had bowled an economic first spell, cost 17 including four wides, and left Cleator with the nice round figure of 200 to win.

The Cumbrians' reply got off to a flier with ten off the first over and skipper Mark Wilkie was forced to bring himself into the attack after five overs, a move that bore immediate fruit with a wicket and from thereon Sessay bowled and fielded themselves back into the game. Another shower persuaded me it was time to head home but I was able to follow the closing overs on Live Sports FM, an online commentary broadcast from in front of the pavilion despite competition from some spectators who had clearly visited the bar.

Cleator lost wickets regularly and eventually fell forty short thus sending Sessay through to the semi final in which they will visit Pembrokeshire outfit Carew CC who were winners over Newtown Linford yesterday, a round trip of almost 600 miles. The other semi final will be between Sibton Park who beat Dinton by six runs and Miskin Manor who got home by two runs against Cookham Dene when a last wicket stand which had produced 52 runs was ended with a run out off the last ball. Thus the two surviving Welsh clubs, Carew and Miskin Manor are kept apart and Lord's on September 4th may yet be a feast of dragons and leeks.

Scorers are behind the door at Sessay

Sunday, 24 July 2016


By Brian Sanderson,

I return to Weetwood again to watch Yorkshire Academy against York in the Black Sheep semi-final.

It is a fifty over competiition which started at 1.00P.M. with the Academy batting after there victory yesterday. There was a shower of rain which delayed the start a few minutes.Harry Brook was soon out for 4 and then Hussain was out for 2 which left the score at 21 for 2. Leo McKendry ,photographed above bowled well . Bowling his ten over for 3 for 28.

Nearly half way through the overs the Academy were in trouble at 88 for 5.Both sides were under strength but  Imtiaz batted well to score 61 before Pringle had him l.b.w .With the help of  Warner ,who scored 41, the Academy reached 224 in the fifty overs. There was a decent crowd but by half time the weather became cooler and some people went in their car too watch the match.

York started well with Brown, also a Academy player and McCauley who put on 35 in eight overs.At this stage I went home for my dinner . The last score is 117 for after 24 overs with the two McKendry brothers batting.

York must be favourites  to go through to the final with these good batsmen.

Saturday, 23 July 2016


By Brian Sanderson,

I met Ron Deaton at Weetwood this morning as he required some autographs of  some young Yorkshire cricketers. Today the Academy were playing Stamford Bridge wo were captain by Will Rhodes,Yorkshire player.

The Academy batted first with Ben Ainsley and Harry Brook opening the batting. As we left they were still batting and looking at totalscorer site they put on a opening stand of 146. The Academy won by 59 runs and the match just finished as we return from our trip.

Second match we went to was Green lane Seconds against Horsforth  Hall Park in the Airedale and Wharfedale League. Ron had not visited the ground before eventhough he played in the league.

Moving on to Apperley Bridge who were playing Interlink in the Bradford Mutual Sunday Cricket League. When I saw cricket on the ground it meant that I had seen cricket on all the grounds in this league.

Moving to the other side of Bradford we arrived at Haycliffe Lane which is the home ground of Great Horton Park Chapel. The club was formed this year when Wibsey Chapel and Great Horton Chapel join together. They play in the Dales Cricket League and this was the final ground I required in this league.The cricket was not of the highest standard but both sides were enjoying their cricket.Long may they continue.

Moving on to the Bradford League , we went to Liversedge who were playing Yeadon who were batting.The home side used to be in the Central Yorkshire League. There second team was bowled for 59 by Hunslet Nelson  in 22 overs. Showing how poor the league is at this present time.However the first team beat Yeadon.

Next match was at  Heckmondwike were the seconds were playing Adwalton. The standard was not good but surprise surprise the home side bowled Adwalton out for 144.It seemed to be played as a charity match.

Last match we went to was at Batley were they were playing Baildon. The ground is next to the Rugby League ground and their supporters club still has not been knocked down since the fire in September 2015.

On the back of a shirt of a Cookeridge player was above. Comments please.

Tuesday, 19 July 2016


By Brian Sanderson,

On a very warm day I picked up Bob Procter and we traveled down to my favourite  county ground , Trent Bridge. It was the second day of the Nottingham and Somerset Championship match.

This morning started with Trecothick unbeaten on 117 and Somerset 244 for 3.During the morning Leech was out to Tahir and Trescothick reached 150 getting there in 227 balls with 24 boundaries.Jim Allenby maintained a steady flow of runs from the other end also and reached his 50 soon after lunch from 92 balls.He advanced his score to 63 before been bowled by Patel, hitting across the line.At this time we were sitting next to Northampton supporter who was Kallis fan.

Trecothick brought up his double century off 323 balls  with a trademark cover drive of Samit Patel before he was the last man to go, chipping Tahir to cover and Somerset scored 437 -a lead of 36.This innings is my favourite innngs of the season so far.He dominated the bowling in gruelling heat.

Imran Tahir took 7 for 112  and was the first overseas bowler to take five wickets in an innings for 12 years.

A excellent day with watching class batting and bowling from the two T's.

A unusual fact about people who read the blog.  It is  more popular in Germany than  in England at this point.

Monday, 18 July 2016

Another old favourite ground

Posted by Tony Hutton

Sunday 17th July and another old favourite appears on my ever changing itinerary.
Netherfield cricket club in Kendal overlooked by the ruined hilltop castle which once
belonged to the family of Katherine Parr, is a wonderful sight on a fine day. Minor Counties cricket has its problems, particularly with finance, but this sort of day was a great advert.

Although the wind blew towards the hardy spectators on top of the bank, who have a perfect view of the action, later in the day we had another wonderful summer evening in the sun.

Strange how the best weather always seems to appear after the tea interval but this has been a familiar story in recent weeks. Good to be back at this picturesque ground, after a gap of a few years, and interesting to see the improvements to the facilities in the pavilion and as ever to meet old friends. A familiar story emerged from my discussions with the hard working Cumberland officials. It has been very difficult to keep the same side together this season, with clubs having first call on their professional players for Sunday cup ties.

Cumberland in the field at Netherfield

So a few new names amongst the Cumberland ranks with one very late replacement after an injury yesterday. How do you find a man late on a Saturday night to play cricket for the next three days? Well skipper Garry Pratt did the trick with one of his Richmondshire team mates. There is also a shortage of wicketkeepers in Cumbria and a young 18 year old, Ben Howarth, from Blackpool made his debut and produced two smart stumpings.

Cambridgeshire batted first without the services of long time captain Paul McMahon, once with Notts, who has a long term injury and is working for the I.C.C. in Dubai. His replacement as professional is Ben Smith, once a high scoring batsman with both Leicester and Worcester. Not today however as when the two spinners took over the attack the leg spinner McKiernan removed opener Butt and Toby Bulcock, the slow left armer, had Smith leg before wicket for only one. So Cambridge 44-2 and up against it.
Distant view of the castle

The two spinners then bowled in tandem for the rest of the morning and almost all the afternoon session. Opener Richer held things together with a hard earned fifty and later in the day number seven Williams played a fine knock of sixty eight to give some respectability to the total. For once Toby Bulcock came in for a bit of punishment towards the end of the innings but stuck to his task and finished with figures of
31.3-9-85-4. His spin twin young McKiernan bowled even more overs and ended with
39-8-101-5. This young man is unfortunate to have been overtaken by another youngster Parkinson now bowling leg spin in the Lancashire first eleven.

Cambridgshire hit out

Cambridgeshire were 260 all out, with three and half overs left out of the first innings maximum of ninety. Probably more than most people expected. Cumberland with so many regulars missing took the unusual step of opening the batting with Toby Bulcock, usually a tail ender. However he stuck around to good effect making 31 in a century opening partnership with Dutton, who was first out after making a rapid 70 off only 72 balls. Cumberland ended day one on 120-2 and the game was nicely poised.

The evening sunshine continued all the way home through the Yorkshire Dales with clear views in all directions over Ingleborough and Pendle Hill. A marvellous end to a perfect day.