Once again, the 3rd XI stole the show, securing their third promotion on the bounce. Outgoing captain Mark Beach once again plundered the bowling to all parts, amassing a tidy 730 runs @ 56. On the rare occasion that the captain failed, youth came to the fore, with Hamish Macgregor, Ben Harris and Ollie Meadows all recording maiden half centuries. Another youth, Henry Andrews, led the pack on the bowling front. Beachy has been an outstanding leader over the past five years, demonstrating qualities that will stand him well when he seeks the Chairmanship of the club in the not too distant future.
Elsewhere, it was a bit of a mixed season. Under new captain Stu MacArthur, the 1st XI enjoyed a great team spirit and an opportunity for a D.I.Y.E never seemed far away. George Woolley, our overseas player settled in nicely and even scored a few runs, whilst the pick of the bowlers were Tom Barrington (22 @ 17) and Stu Macarthur (21 @ 19). Behind the pegs, Matt Tavare went from strength to strength, pouching some key victims.
It was a bit of a struggle for the Sunday XI, with only a solitary win to celebrate. However, a talented group of young players emerged. Ollie Meadows, Freddie Vaughan and Joe Cuthbert all performed credibly, however the pick of the youth was Fin Yates, demonstrating creative stroke play and, at times, incredible glove work.
The 4th XI once again finished safely in mid-table. More of their young players put in decent performances, with Ewen Yates finishing the season as the team’s top scorer and Ollie Harris going from strength to strength with the ball. Captain Craig Strachan believes his side is poised for greater things next season, assuming he is able to field his strongest possible side on a more regular basis.
Our Ladies team had a good season, gaining a number of lovely new players and playing a reasonable number of games. Gloucestershire CCC has stepped up to the plate this year and their players benefitted from some training and indoor fixtures, both of which they hope to take advantage of again in 2017.
Off the pitch, I would like to record my thanks to the volunteers who were instrumental in making cricket happen at this club. To the captains and, in particular Mark Beach and Craig Strachan, for their tireless work in getting four teams out every week; to our Treasurer, Peter Matthews, who somehow ensures we remain in a decent financial position; to Alex Harris and his youth coaches, who ensure the pipeline of talented players; to Rhiannon, who had to put up with the 1st team drivel from the score box week in, week out; to Richard Leonard, who demonstrated his outstanding DIY skills in erecting our new electronic scoreboard; to Will Penny, who led the charge to raise funds for the club; to Steve Williams, who led the efforts to prepare the ground for both the summer and the winter; to Phil Thorn, for compiling the Club Handbook and to Jon Sheeran who, amongst other things, took in a scarecrow for the summer. I’d also like to thank Nick and Lisa, who fed and watered us fantastically throughout the season.
It has been an honour to have served the club as its Chairman over the past 4 years – through ups and downs, ins and outs, excellence and mediocrity, all in equal measures. This is a great club that provides terrific opportunities for all its members. Bring on 2017.
And a brief word from the new Chairman…
I don’t want to steal Gladys’ thunder but it would be remiss of me if, at this point, I didn’t take the opportunity to thank him for his service to the club over the last 4 years. Richard has done an awful lot for us in his time has Chairman and has overseen a period in which we’ve achieved Clubmark status for the first time, installed a new surface for the outdoor nets and embraced an electronic scoring system on the main square.
His service to the club has been magnificent and we’d certainly be a poorer (in so many senses of the word) club were it not for him. If only he’d got some forms in on time…
Thanks for everything Glynny!