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Deegs' tribute to the ‘old guard’

Andrew Deegan starts his seventh season at Cleck’ in 2018 after joining from Bankfoot as a potentially good prospect -but relatively raw – all those seasons ago.

He has developed brilliantly in to one of the best spinners in the ECB Bradford Cricket Premier League if not at times a little underrated. Everyone at Moorend recognises Deegs’ ability and his strength of character. He is one of the few bowlers that puts to one side negativity if he goes for a few runs, Andrewjust gets on with his game and he’s always got wickets up his sleeve and he is a very popular man atCleck’.

He’s also astute when it comes to the game in general – if not with more than a hint of ‘dry’ humour. “With the season still 133 days away, at the time of writing, I have not thought too much about the coming season,” admitted Deegs. “I’ll enjoy Christmas before I start to moan about having to go to winter nets. After what was a very disappointing season I know there have been a number of changes at the Club for next season. It’s a shame that some of the lads have chosen to move on to other Clubs but I am sure it is what’s right for them.”

Curtis Free has re-joined his old Club Doncaster Town whilst Joe Wood has signed for Spen Victoria, and Ian Nicholson has retired from the game whilst Andy Gorrod’s future is in limbo but they all part withDeegs’ best wishes. “I want to wish Curt and Joe all the best at their new Clubs for the coming season,” he added. “It is also sad to see a couple of lads call it a day. I think Eor (Ian Nicholson) will be a big loss – he was a great fielder and a handy spinner!! I am sure that when he is dragging himself around the Trafford centre next April shopping for cushions on a Saturday he will wish he was back in the dressing room. I am fairly certain Andy G can be convinced to play again so I don’t want to give him a send off – just yet!”

Ian Nicholson's fielding abilities will be a big loss, according to Deegs!

Like so many at Cleck’ the loss of the Club’s star turn in the tea room has disappointed one of her best customers. “Whilst the players that have left will be greatly missed their loss pales in to insignificance in comparison to the loss of Mrs Wood’s chocolate covered rice crispy buns," admitted a man who expects to be in trim condition next season," – "And Saturdays will never be the same again.”

Finally, Deegs admits that former Skipper John Wood has been a major influence on his progress. “The coming season will be the first time the Captaincy has changed whilst I have been at Cleckheaton asJohn signed me six years ago,” he commented. “I have always said that John has a good eye for picking talent! He has done a fantastic job over the last 10 years or more in building a team that managed to win Trophies and compete year in and year out. I am certain John will be on hand to help out new SkipperMally Nicholson when he needs it. Mally will do a brilliant job as the Captain although his main priority should be learning how to toss a coin! I look forward to seeing the new guys play and they can hopefully bring success back to the Club. Wishing everyone a fantastic Christmas and look forward to seeing you all in the New Year at Cleck’.”

Andrew Deegan is as wily on the field as he is witty off it!!

Overseas capture concluded!

Pakistan-born Tayyab Tahir is set to join Cleck’ for the 2018 season.

The 24-year-old right-hand batsman and right hand leg break spinner is currently playing for Lahore Eagles in his homeland and although an opening bat, he comes to Cleck’ to bat at number three behindToby Thorpe and Vice-Captain Nick Lindley.

Born July 26th 1993, Tayyab arrives at Moorend highly-rated. Former Cricket Chairman and Cricket Committee member Dave Worrall admits that the Club's Skipper Mally Nicholson endorses the latest signing. “Tayabb is having a good season so far,” revealed Dave. “Mally is pleased with his stats and we hope that his bowling is as effective as Tanzeel Altaf’s was when he was at Cleck’.”

Although signing an overseas on recommendation and stats doesn’t always guarantee success it’s fair to say that over the years Cleck’ have been fortunate to be well looked after by the agent and in Tayabb’scase every check possible on his ability has been made.

Tayyab Tahir is Cleck's new overseas signing for the 2018 season

TobyJosh Thurwell and Johnny Whiteoak have already signed for the Club with at least one more player on the way. “We are hoping to sign one or may be two more new players,” added Dave. “A Senior Bradford League official recently told me that he felt Toby is an astute signing from Undercliffe and he rates him highly.”

Thankfully, every player signed has come to the Club for cricket reasons and signings to date look promising as Cleck’s aim is to avoid last season’s relegation dog-fight and build a side the way that former Captain John Wood so successfully managed over a fantastic period of ten years plus but underMally’s stewardship this time around.

Mally Nicholson has a lot of work ahead of him in 2018, batting, stumping and being the Skipper!!

The haves and have not’s

In the event of some potential knuckle rapping, which has happened to Cleck’ in the past, we’ll keep names intact and comment in cryptic fashion - but the more that members and supporters at Moorend talk to others around the Bradford League circuit the more it appears a gulf is forming between the few that can afford players’ demands and those that cannot.

It’s been a bone of contention for many years but the problem’s now escalating.

Some Clubs have benefactors, many fund-raise in pro-active fashion, Cleck’ included, quite a few Clubs are on their uppers financially. One high-profile Bradford League outfit by all accounts hasn’t a clue where players or funds are coming from for the 2018 season!

And does every Club adhere to the minimum standards that were set by the League, four sight screens and juniors set up etc?

There are a great deal of unanswered questions and it looks like the level required to stay at the top is whittled down to several who can afford to ‘splash the cash’ – on players - and allegedly not on minimum standards - and even then they’ll be in denial!

Cleck’s Cricket Committee and Captain Mally Nicholson are doing their utmost to wield together a successful side on minimum resources and thankfully the Club is one of few that has the required number of sight screens and the Clubmark accreditation and the required juniors sections in place – it’s quite some time now that those rules were put in place – have they been adhered to elsewhere - Only the authorities will know and if not why not?

Cleck's facilities at Moorend are in keeping with Bradford League standards

Three new signings sorted with additional trio anticipated!

Toby ThorpeJosh Thurwell and Johnny Whiteoak have signed from UndercliffeCarlton andLightcliffe respectively with a further three new signings expected to be announced in the near future.

Two experienced batsmen and an overseas are targets but nothing can be announced until everything is rubber stamped. Previous stories can be found under the archive section.

Mally Nicholson is 'on the case' and he rarely misses a chance!

Bonfire night bonanza best yet?

According to Cleck’s groundsman Keith Johnstone, Sunday’s traditional bonfire night celebrations were arguably the best yet?

As ever the Sports Club holds a firework display and much more besides for members and their families and guests and the plot night evening is always a great success but this year’s surpassed all expectations! “It was superbly organised,” commented Keith. “Congratulations to everyone involved and the numbers attending seemed to be larger than ever and it was probably the best we’ve ever seen”!

Credit indeed - from a man who’s seen it all at Moorend down the years.

*The Cricket Section’s annual dinner speaker will be announced soon*

Keith Johnstone has 'led the line' at Moorend quite a few times over the years!

Chairman advocates positivity

Ian Gatenby has taken to the role of Cricket Chairman with his usual gusto and he’s experienced and knowledgeable about the game to put forward worthy opinions.

“I feel very positive about the new acquisitions as we are looking to sign young players who are hungry for success and want to improve,” commented Gats. “It is important that we get the balance right so we are hoping a couple more signings to add experience in addition to our existing players will bring stability and they can work with the younger lads.”

Johnny Whiteoak is one of a superb trio of signings with three additional newcomers anticipated!

Ian is very much at the forefront of the Presentation Evening selling sponsorship for the race night and this year’s was arguably the best ever. “The Presentation Evening was very successful and it was nice to see the room full of juniors, their parents and grandparents plus members of the Senior team,” he added. “The race meeting went down a storm particularly the Auction where at one point Antony Lee was bidding against Mrs Lee! Who in turn was bidding against their son Ethan.”

Gats took over as Cricket Chairman from Dave Worrall last year but for more years than he will care to remember the Club’s former wicket/keeper and Rugby stalwart has overseen matters with the juniors. “At present the Club structure is built on solid foundations,” admitted Ian. “We have a pro-active Committee, a progressive Juniors Section and Senior teams that are hoping to show that we are competitive in both First and Second team Leagues. We do have changes to consider, not least how do you replace the irreplaceable in Anne Wood whose teas are legendary but I am sure we will face any dilemmas and overcome them.”

Gats is a genuine Club man who has the experience, nous and interest to lead Cleck’ to further success.

Ian Gatenby is a winner in every aspect

Cleckheaton Cricket Club is saddened by news of the death of Ken Gill the father of Cleck’s one-time wicket/keeper batsman Mark Gill and his brother Neil, who is also a Bradford League cricketer.

Ken regularly came to Moorend with his wife Margaret to watch games in addition to going around the league to see his sons play.

Sincere condolences go to Ken’s wife Margaret and their sons and all of their family for their sad loss.Ken will genuinely be missed by everyone at Cleck’ he was a true gentleman.

Johnny on the spot!!

Lightcliffe’s opening fast bowler Johnny Whiteoak becomes Cleck’s latest capture.

The talented young quick bowler joins Josh Thurwell another opening bowler from Carlton and opening batsman Toby Thorpe from Undercliffe as the Club’s trio of pre-season captures.

The latest signing is crucial especially after the departure of Curtis Free and Skipper Mally is delighted to have Johnny at Moorend. “He’s a good signing," he admitted. “He will do a great job for us and it’s also a great opportunity for him.”

Johnny has played for the Yorkshire U19s and represented Durham CCC in three second team games. He is a tall right-handed  bowler with a trick or two up his sleeve, which includes an effective Yorker and the odd bouncer now and again.

The newcomers doesn’t stop there with an overseas signing still on the agenda and at least one more player, who is understood to be an experienced all-rounder who’s more than likely coming as a batsman. The core of the team is in place and there's enough experience in the side to assist the younger players in what is expected to be an exciting Cleck' team for 2018.

Former Chairman Dave Worrall added; "Johnny is a fantastic signing for the Club, he's a superb bowler."

Dave Worrall is confident that Cleck's newcomers will be a success at Cleck'

Cleck’s latest capture commented on his move to Moorend. “I am looking forward to joining the lads atCleckeaton CC,” commented Johnny. “I felt it was a good opportunity to take to keep progressing and also to help the Club move forward. I loved my time at Lightcliffe CC but felt it was the right time to move.”

Johnny Whiteoak has joined Cleck' to become the Club's third pre-season capture

Mally makes no secret in that he wants to 'freshen things up' and young players will be given what is a real chance to shine at the top level of local cricket.

Footnote: Johnny – Josh – and Toby have joined Cleck’ for the ‘right reasons’ and that’s about enjoying and developing their game and great credit goes to them – and to Mally and the Cricket committee for making astute signings and with more to come.

Cleck's latest signings receive the 'thumbs up' from members and supporters

Free family are real ‘Jem’s’!

Curtis Free has returned to his former Club Doncaster Town and not only does Cleck’ lose a superb player and a top-man but supportive parents who’ve assisted our Club enormously but there’s only positivity following his departure.

Curt’s Dad Jem’ has emphasised how both he and his wife Ros’ and their son are sad to be leaving but needs must. “Curt’s departure is genuine and nothing to do with money,” revealed Jem’. “Due to work and increased hours he wouldn’t be able to make nets’ practice next season as well as missing some games and because of Saturday morning shift work he’d be late for some matches - so his move is probably for the best all round.”

Everyone at Moorend accepts that Curt’ had little option but to leave – but he goes on the best of terms with he and his family welcome back at Cleck’ any time and with open arms.

No ‘Curt’ response from Cleck’!

Opening fast bowler Curtis has returned to his home town Club Doncaster Town whilst Josh Thurwellarrives at Moorend with at least two more players on the way!

Curt decided to re-join his former outfit due to work commitments and he leaves Cleck’ with the Club’s best wishes. The opening fast bowler has played his part both on and off-the-field and alongside his parents Jem and Ros also - who have followed their son’s fortunes both home and away and have supported events at Cleck’ as well as Jem' helping out with match day tasks.

Curtis and his family will be a big miss but they leave with genuine best wishes from everyone including former Chairman Dave Worrall. “We are obviously disappointed to see a good player like Curtis leave the Club but he goes with our thanks for all he’s done and best wishes for the future,” commented Dave. “I‘m sure we’ll be catching up with his family especially when Doncaster Rovers play Bradford City.”

The good news is; Josh Thurwell has signed from Carlton to become Cleck’s second capture with opening batsman Toby Thorpe arriving from UndercliffeJosh is a left-arm quick bowler and rated highly by Skipper Mally Nicholson. “Josh is a talented young bowler who took 50 wickets for Carlton last season and we’re hoping he’ll carry it on with us,” said Mally.

There could be further good news next week with the capture of a current ECB Bradford Cricket Premier League opening fast bowler to replace Curt whilst an experienced and highly-rated performer remains a target with the likelihood of a talented overseas being sought.

Curtis Free departs Cleck' for genuine reasons and with everyone's best wishes

Superb events within a week!

On Sunday October 1st the now traditional fish & chips luncheon was a massive success with 107 guests not just enjoying the food on offer but MC/Comedian Jed Stone ran the show in slick and humorous fashion.

Organiser Keith Johnstone with quite a bit of help from Mike Williamson can be delighted at the way the guests embraced the occasion and Lauren Worrall and her friend were once again superb serving the fish & chips in rapid fashion and selling the raffle tickets.

On Friday October 6th the function room was full once more, this time for the Juniors Presentation and Race Night. Chairman Ian Gatenby made sure that he had every race sponsored and he was like a dog with a bone in selling sponsorship – and this year’s event was possibly the best ever? Parents, grandparents and relations supported the youngsters in fantastic style and it really was a friendly and lively night.

Former Chairman Dave Worrall handed out the Trophies to all of the age groups. Juniors Manager Russ Noble and staunch Committee man and Club sponsor Antony Lee played their parts as did Steve Midgley – albeit Steve had the task of serving the chips!

There were of course many individual winners but the biggest winner was Cricket at Juniors level as the support, the good-feel factor and overall positivity was marvellous to witness – and both events helped keep the Cricket Section’s coffers ticking over.

The 'Three Amigos' - Brian, Lloyd and Donovan were at the fabulous fish & chips luncheon

Cleck’s popular ‘enigma’ bids farewell

Just hours after the Club paid a tribute to the departing teas lady Anne Wood it is with great sadness that we say farewell to another popular character in Ian Nicholson.

Changes are afoot at Cleck’ and thankfully the Club remains in the ECB Bradford Cricket Premier League and for the first time in ten years ‘Eor’ as Ian is often called will be missing from the First Team sheet. His Dad Neil played for the Club for a number of seasons and assisted this season whilst Ian’sbrother Mally is the new Captain for next term having also been at Moorend for the last decade.

The Nicholson family, as with the Wood family (John and his brother Ian and their mum Anne being part of the furniture at Cleck’) have given so much to the Club. Ian has decided to call it a day but admits he has wonderful memories of his time at Moorend and the over-riding memory from supporters and members is of a player who on his day was a batsman as good as anyone to watch albeit frustratingly inconsistent but never-the-less highly rated and undoubtedly talented. “Lightcliffe was my last game forCleck’,” revealed Ian. “I have loved my time at Cleck’ and to be honest I could not see me playing for any other Club. We have had some ups and downs like the last couple of years but the highlights for me have to be the years when we won two Titles and were in the Priestley Cup Final. The side we had was very good.”

Despite his early ‘retirement’ Eor admits he won’t be able to stay away from the Club. “I will still be down to watch nearly every home game,” he added. “Cleck’ is a good Club and my kids enjoy going to the games.”

For 25 years Dave Worrall was the Cricket Chairman until handing over the reins to Ian Gatenby andEor acknowledges Dave’s role in the Club’s success. “I would like to thank Dave who signed me forCleck’ and has pushed the Club forward,” commented Eor. “I’d like to thank all of the lads I’ve played with and one thing I’ll miss most is the craic we have in the changing room. In there you cannot hide and everyone gets it! I’d like to say good luck also to all of the lads for next season and I’ll see you for a beer or two.”

Ian’s brother Mally added; “Eor will be missed by us all and especially in the changing room. He has been great to play alongside and winning two Titles with my brother were real highlights.”

Ian will be much missed but he’s successful in business alongside Mally, he has a superb family and a great deal to look forward to in the future and with recollections of a cricket career that has seen him, highly-rated and a very popular man.

Ian Nicholson departs Cleck' with his reputation intact and fantastic memories for all at Moorend of a much-loved character

Yorkshire Day photos

Dave Worrall kindly forwarded the photos seen below of the Cricket Section’s version of ‘Yorkshire Day’ held at Moorend on Sunday July 30th – and the event was extremely enjoyable.

Lauren Worrall and her two friends were absolute stars on Yorkshire Day serving the food


Steve and Viv Wilson are always supportive of Club events


Dave Worrall's guests enjoyed their afternoon out


Two elegant 'Yorkshire ladies' Angie Ainsworth and Emma Wood


Cleck's Club Captain John Wood and several players supported 'Yorkshire Day' (the lady pictured was a guest of the saxophonist)


Roger Banks and his guests definitely enjoyed their day!


Comedian John Lory was excellent and better when facing the audience!!

Yorkshire Day was a reight success!!

Sunday July 30th may not have been the 'official' Yorkshire Day but Cleck' made it there's and the day was a great success.

Saxophonist Tim Clarke, Magician David Linacre and Comedian John Lory made the afternoon a fantastic occasion but arguably the main stars were Anne WoodJoyceLaurenBridghinPoppey andCara who cooked and served the traditional Sunday Lunch both professionally and courting many compliments from guests that totalled 97 on the day.

Just hours after the event Saxophonist Tim e-mailed the following;

“I'd like to thank your Club formally for not just booking me to play today at Cleckheaton but also for Lorraine and I to be involved in what was such a hugely enjoyable occasion.  The food was excellent, and the other contributors - the magician was phenomenal, the comedian made me cry more than for a long time – they were just top-notch. So thanks again for a fantastic afternoon!” Tim

Thanks Tim and thank you to everyone who attended and made the day a special occasion.

Magician David Linacre went down extremely well at Cleck' on Sunday

Cleck’ stalwart receives deserved accolade

Bob Shackleton has been handed a service to cricket award from the YCB.

The veteran Cleck’ Cricket President and long serving administrator and former Chief Executive Officer of the Bradford League has been highly commended by the hierarchy serving Yorkshire.

Yorkshire cricket hosted their annual outstanding service to cricket awards on Sunday July 23rd at Headingley with Bob a worthy recipient of recognition.

Yorkshire Cricket Board Chairman Chris West commented; “It is humbling and inspiring to hear of the commitment and energy being given voluntarily to the game of cricket.”

Now in his 80s, ‘Shack’ remains active in so many ways still assisting the League and Cleck’ and much of Bob’s work goes unnoticed as he is a solid advisor, supports fund-raising at Moorend and is a true voice of experience.

Everyone at Cleck’ is delighted for a man who simply loves cricket!

Bob Shackleton usually hands out awards - for once he is a deserved recipient

Ladies luncheon goes down a storm

Saturday’s ladies luncheon that in the main was a Rugby supported event in terms of guests but benefits the Cricket Section - went down an absolute storm!

Around 65 ladies attended, seven from the Cricket Section that made the afternoon a wonderful occasion. Let’s make no bones about this there’s a lot of work to be done both on and off-the-field not least with effort from everyone to make sure that Cleckheaton Cricket Club survives before we even think of thriving.

However, we have to pay tribute to the Cricket Section Captain’s mum Anne Wood and her granddaughter Kate, who is Skipper John Wood’s daughter of course, along with Maxine Speight who all worked tirelessly in the kitchen from 8:30am until late afternoon and with a great deal of assistance from the Sports Club Chair Lady, Elaine Binns who got ‘stuck in.’

The afore-mentioned ladies were brilliant – and thank you to them.

Their efforts along with Club Manager Richard Firth were awesome and go a long way towards assisting with the Cricket Section’s financial commitments.

During the luncheon one lady who was sat on Karen Porritt’s table said to one member; “I’ve never been here before but it’s brilliant.” Another lady remarked about the tables set up and general ambience in the function room by adding; “It looks like a wedding reception.” A host of ladies remarked on the quality of the food, which is a true compliment and credit to those involved.

If 'Yorkshire Day' is as successful as the 'Ladies Luncheon' everyone will be delighted!

Mally announced as Captain for 2018!

Following a meeting on Thursday evening between the current Cleck’ Captain John Wood, Vice-CaptainMally Nicholson and the Cricket Chairman Ian Gatenby alongside former Chairman Dave Worrall it was decided to make early positive moves for next term.

Mally is appointed Captain for the 2018 season and Nick Lindley will be his Vice-Captain with Woodycontinuing his playing career.

After more than a decade with the Club, Mally has shown dedication and loyalty to Cleck’ and deserves the opportunity and he will be greatly supported by Nick who in a short time since joining from Pudsey Congs has been an outstanding signing and a respected voice.

The additional plus is that Woody is still there to offer advice and support and with the bonus of being able to enjoy his game without pressure for the first time in 12 years!

The joint statement read; ‘Our aim is to win the League Championship once more.’

Overall, the consistency in personnel can only be in the Cricket Section’s favour.

Mally Nicholson ignores targeting the ceiling and reaches the sky!

Cleck’ rue Duckworth-less system!

Cleck’ tied a tense tussle at Townville with more questions than answers following the Duckworth Lewis ruling leading to a revised target for the hosts that had to be clarified for one hour and 30 minutes without a drop of rain falling during a prolonged tea interval.

Possibly the longest non rain interrupted tea interval in the history of the Bradford League occurred on Saturday May 27th whilst confusion reigned. Cleck’ batted first and posted 220-9 after 50 overs, which was rain interrupted early afternoon but without any suggestion of what was to follow.

Tea was taken at 5:05pm and play finally commenced at 6:35pm following lengthy discussions between the umpires, scorers and players as no-one seemed to fully appreciate what was happening. Calls to the Bradford League hierarchy were made and allegedly two officials came up with different target scores until 177 was the agreed figure. Even then on a shambolic afternoon the scoreboard read 177 was required by Townville for most of the game - with many spectators believing that 178 was needed to win until that was altered to 176 with Cleck’s Andy Gorrod seeking clarification from one of the umpires who confirmed that 177 was the score required to win the game, which was duly accepted.

Awais Ejaz was in the 'thick of the action' at Townville 48 hours before he was set to face his former Club East Bierley in a game that was abandoned due to wet weather

Prior to then the 90 minute tea break revealed the following;

  • Because Cleck’s run rate was at six an over when rain stopped play the visitor’s scorer Lee Speightconfirmed that the hosts would need to score 228 to win. That calculated assumption was eventually altered.
  • It transpired that Cleck’ should have declared on 43 overs to make it an equal contest – but there was no hint at that particular suggestion from anyone. Had that been the case the Cleck’ innings would have taken a different format.
  • Duckworth Lewis is a mathematical formulation designed to calculate the target score for the team batting second in a limited overs game. Part of Duckworth Lewis is that the target fluctuates and is affected by wickets taken that change the target. However, the target arrived at for Townville never changed!
  • There has to be sympathy for umpires Mr Andy Halliday and Mr Tony Tennant as they did their best to remain in control but appeared as bewildered as the rest of the players and spectators. Typical of the way the match unfolded there was a separate incident that witnessed an elderly spectator seemingly jump from her seat to avoid a high ball on the boundary edge and she collided with Cleck’s Awais Ejaz who was poised to take a catch that was, after in-depth discussions, given as a six. Should it have been a dead ball? As always umpires give an honest decision and there’s no suggestion of complaint just simply asking the question during an afternoon that asked far more questions than answers were given.

Whether it’s rules or websites – ‘keep it simple’ – should be the motto and as a professionally run outfitCleckheaton Cricket Club has a responsibility to seek clarification that those officials associated with the League fully understand Duckworth Lewis, which appears to be much more complicated than anticipated. If that comment is deemed as provocative then so was the 90 minute tea interval!

Sadly, events of the day overshadowed a hard fought albeit very strange contest with Nick Lindleyplaying a starring role scoring 110 runs whilst there was some tight bowling from the Cleck’ bowlers as well as excellent fielding.Townville ended on 176-9 as Skipper John Wood bowled the final over taking 1-5 to ensure a hard-earned tie for Cleck’Woody took the mantle and his one and only over saw him ensure a deserved result of some sort. Cleck's players can take great credit in remaining focused as the late finish, which was close to 9pm, made fielding extremely difficult and one catch from Deeg's was first class as was the fielding overall.

Nick Lindley scored a superb century against Townville

Cleck's Seconds lost by six wickets at home to East Ardsley after being dismissed for 145.

Deeg’s points to positives

Andrew Deegan is Cleck’s reliable and more than useful spin bowler who can also bat a bit and he is sufficiently qualified to give a considered opinion of the Club’s slow start to the new term.

The following thoughts are those of Deeg’s in his own words; “From the outside looking in it would seem that the signs are not looking good for Cleckheaton Cricket Club but that couldn't be further from the truth.

Whilst we are still yet to win a game there has been some real positives to take from the defeats and I do not think we are far away from putting a run together.

Our bowling has been a mixed bag. At times we have bowled really well such as on Sunday in the Cup against Pudsey St Lawrence and at other times we have struggled to bowl in the right areas, build pressure and take wickets. Qaiser Ashraf our oversees is looking like a very good bowler capable of taking wickets and keeping things tight. Our bowling seems to be improving with every game. We just have to make sure that continues.

Our batting as a team has not actually been too bad. If you had said in the first four games in April/May we would score 209, 121, 258, 207 you would normally take that before the season thinking anything over 200 is really competitive.

It has just been one of those starts. Mally 'MVP' Nicholson has started really well and the lower order has shown they can do their bit when needed. All we are missing is the top four to start occupying the crease for longer periods (Scoring runs is not an issue!) and I am sure that will come soon.

The lads are getting on well and enjoying their cricket. We just need a little bit of luck to turn the tables and get the ball rolling."

Deeg’s is one of a number of loyal Cleck’ players who have won two Championship medals in recent years and his opinions count for a great deal within the Club in-particular.

Andrew Deegan is a determined and respected character at Cleck'

Guess whose baby?

Yes, this is a cricket website but we're a family Club and who could possibly resist the above photo of little Alfie the new born to Dean Worrall and Angie Ainsworth!

Skipper advocates a warm welcome as new season dawns

Cleck’s long serving Captain John Wood has issued the following message ahead of the 2017 season.

“A warm welcome to all our supporters and opposition teams for the new 2017 season. There have been several changes to our side from last season and the new players are looking to make their mark on our side in the coming weeks.

The team looks well balanced and if everybody does their job to their ability I feel there could be a successful season ahead.

Over the decade or so I have been at the Club, the support from the committee and supporters has been unbelievable and has massively contributed to the success we have had as a team, particularly in winning the League on two occasions. I am sure this will continue this year and your encouragement is a massive bonus for all the players and the club as a whole. Once again we will continue to play cricket in the way it should be played, aggressive but with respect the officials and our opponents.

Although our aim is to win games we hope our brand of cricket continues to entertain our supporters as your numbers continue to grow. A massive thank you to Keith Johnstone and John Hawkesworth for all their hard work on the ground which currently looks in magnificent condition and all the people behind the scenes who work tirelessly to make the Club what it is today.”

Cleck' have prepared correctly pre-season

Ideal ‘work out’ at Jer Lane

On a bitterly cold Saturday afternoon at Jer Lane there was an additional hour to wait for players and supporters as the pre-announced 12 noon start actually witnessed the game commencing at 1:00pm.

Never-the-less a biting wind and occasional blustery showers between the odd bits of sun coming through didn’t spoil what was a very useful pre-season contest against a Halifax League outfit that had several highly rated outsiders representing them.

Cleck’s opening pair of Andy Gorrod and Nick Lindley linked up well and although looking comfortable,Nick was given out LBW for 33 trying a tempting sweep shot with the score 51-1. Andy had to concentrate and grind out his early runs before letting loose and retiring on 52 and with Skipper John Wood and his son Joe on holiday and the overseas awaiting international clearance, Abu Dawood came in at number three and the young man captured from Buttershaw St Paul’s notched 28 runs before being stumped and his lively running between the wickets was impressive as was his overall demeanour at the crease.

Joe Robinson was out caught behind and Ian Nicholson retired having made 40 excellent runs. Mally Nicholson got in to the thirties and batted out what ended up being 35 overs apiece game and Elliot Hallas had a breezy cameo knock of 14 runs.

Cleck’s innings ended on 215-4.

Curtis Free took an early wicket bowling the opposition’s opener without a run on the scoreboard. Jer Lane were eventually all out for 188 including four wickets for Sam Wilson and three for Curtis and a couple for the new boy Awais Ejaz who signed from East Bierley during the winter. The bowlers were helped in no small way by three catches taken by Robbo' that proves how important good fielding is when it comes to achieving a positive result.

Sam Wilson is a tremendous bowler and all round character who is patient and able to 'allow time to just pass him by'!

Congratulations to Jer Lane who were excellent hosts and their ground looks in good condition and with a nets practice facility that is as good as it comes, they provided a good day out for Cleck’s players and supporters.

After Saturday’s friendly Cleck' received the following e-mail from Mr James Nixon on behalf of Jer Lane CC.

He wrote; “I have been asked by the Jer Lane committee to thank Cleckheaton CC for supporting yesterday's friendly fixture. It's always nice to welcome Clubs whose paths wouldn't normally cross. TheCleckheaton players are a credit to your Club. Please pass on our thanks. Good luck for the coming season.”

Those kind sentiments are very much reciprocated.

As far as Cleck’s concerned the way that both openers acquitted themselves in difficult conditions and how well Ian Nicholson played, it augurs well for the future and a real plus could be the young man nicknamed Abs who may have joined the Club with Second team cricket in mind but he showed enough quality on his debut to serve notice that there’s a capable player waiting in the wings.

Curtis has lost two stone in weight and he looked trim and firing on all cylinders with an impressive opening bowler to partner him in Awais.

It may have only been a friendly game but it was a very important work out on grass for the team that owes great thanks to Sam’s willingness to make the arrangements and he bowled well on the day taking four wickets – albeit he might wish to check his watch works!!

Nick Lindley looked solid batting alongside Andy Gorrod at Jer Lane

New Covers set for Cleck’

Thanks to the advice of Sports Club member John Archer who pointed the Cricket Section in the right direction - a grant has been submitted and confirmed by the ECB that means Cleck’ will have additional top quality covers to enhance those already in the Club’s possession.

When the covers will be with the Club remains in the air but everything is in place with the ground in fine fettle overall for the new term.

John Archer (pictured right alongside groundsman Keith Johnstone with committee member Steve Midgley in the background) is one of the Sports Club's stalwarts and a true friend of the Cricket Section

Spirits high at Cleck’, reveals Mally

Mally Nicholson is set for his first ever season as the Club’s vice-captain and the long-serving wicketkeeper/batsman who will be the number two to Skipper John Wood is adamant that the morale within the team is better than ever!

“There is a great team spirit developing,” admitted Mally. “The crack between the lads is better than ever.Nick Lindley is looking good in the nets as is Andy Gorrod and I am looking forward to seeing them bat together.”

Without wishing to be disrespectful to last season’s overseas opening bowler Mohammed Bilawal, who was a very popular and a likeable young man, he wasn’t able to make the transition to Bradford League Cricket with any real impact and in many ways it affected his opening bowling partner Curtis Free but this term Mally believes things will be different especially with the capture of fast bowler Awais Ejaz. “Curtis looks fit and very strong in the nets, which is good as we are going to need him and Awais to take early wickets,” he added. “It will be also good to get back outside and playing on grass and like all the lads I can’t wait to get started and hopefully win some silverware for Cleck’.”

Mally has been at Cleck’ for over a decade alongside his brother Ian Nicholson, who it should be remembered finished last season with a flourish and the guys will be joined by their Dad, Neil Nicholsonwho might be in the twilight days of his career and only play when needed - but the one-time Yorkshire CCC batsman, who has re-joined the Club from Bankfoot following a successful period at Moorendseveral years ago, remains a respected voice around the place.

The Nicholson family are very much an integral part of what occurs at Cleck’.

Cleck's new vice-captain Mally Nicholson is an influential character at Moorend

Ball Sponsors still required!

A simple and value for money way to assist the Club is becoming a ball sponsor with a person (or a company) name appearing in the match day programme for an allocated contest and already twelve individuals have agreed such a deal.

However, with potential Cup games and Seconds’ contests there is still room for more and for £50 it is superb value. Anyone wishing to put their name forward please contact any Cricket Committee member and especially Secretary Bob Speight who is overseeing the programme for the second successive season, a task he undertook for many years previously.

Current ball sponsors includes;  Skipper John Wood and former Chairman Dave Worrall In addition; Sam GatenbyKevin MitchellNick Wagstaff – ATA buildersMatthew StephensonRoger Banks (from Mr Scratchings) Richard Oakey - Barry (local fish & chips proprietor)Susan Stanley -  Jim (loyal supporter)

The afore-mentioned includes a real mixed bag and thanks to everyone who has pledged their money as such support is invaluable.

Match ball sponsors for Cleck's home games assists the Club greatly

‘Cool’ committee man recovering well

Lloyd Campbell was taken ill just recently and rushed to hospital after collapsing in Cleckheaton but he’s now back home and doing just fine.

The West Indies born one-time local fast bowler is now in his early 80s but still looks much younger and he is always very smart with an ability to carry off clothes of someone half his age.

Equally, Lloyd is a true gentleman and someone who has helped out on the Cricket Committee doing sterling work for a number of years by selling tickets, attending events, working on the gate, overseeing duties on the ground to name just a few examples. He has also a great knowledge of the game and gives good advice to many of the side's players.

Sadly, Lloyd’s failing eyesight might curtail some of his future exploits but the good news for everyone atCleck’ is that he is in his own home and in good spirits and looking forward to the cricket season.

Lloyd pictured sat between his good friends and fellow Cleck' followers Brian and Donovan

One of India’s greatest off spinners remembers Cleck’

Kanwaljeet Singh mesmerised Bradford League opponents with his off spin playing for Cleck’ over two decades ago and the man with a fabulous Cricket pedigree - to this day remains in touch with the Club’s former Cricket Chairman Dave Worrall and never forgets the influence that playing at Moorend had on his career. “Having played for a team like Cleckheaton it made me a better player,” admitted Kanwaljeet. “I along with my family still relish the hospitality rendered to us while our stay in Bradford.”

Kanwaljeet has earned himself the reputation as one of his Country’s greatest off-spinners ever produced and nowadays he is an influential figure in the IPL. He said; “In the past I was with Deccan Chargers as assistant coach for five years in the IPL from year 2008 to 2012. Darren Lehman was the Head Coach and we won the championship in 2009 when the tournament was held in South Africa. I was Director of Hyderabad cricket academy of excellence under the aegis of Hyderabad cricket association from 2013-2015. I have also been involved with National cricket academy (BCCI) and have been chief coach of central zone u-19 n south zone u-16 team for the past two years.”

The one-time Cleck’ overseas star added; "it’s been a wonderful journey so far and I am looking forward to getting some good assignment in future. I was also the coach of Hyderabad team for the Ranji Trophy championship around 2003-2004 the same year I was also coach of south zone team for the DuleepTrophy (national championship seniors).”

Kanwaljeet Singh respected both in his native India and at Cleckheaton

Great night had by all

Friday’s Annual Dinner held by the Cricket Section was a real success.

It’s not a case of ‘throwing bouquets’ but the 100 or so guests witnessed interesting and honest stories from Bradford City’s Greg Abbott and Radio Five Live's Chief Football reporter Ian Dennis and between them the duo brought a great deal of enthusiasm to Moorend.

The comedian John Lory was certainly different but arguably one of the best seen at the Club whilst MCJohn Collier is a slick operator who makes a difficult job appear easy.

John cajoled eleven guests to become ball sponsors as well as maximising the auction, which wasn’t particularly easy. Thanks go to everyone who attended and went out of their way to attend and hopefully those who were there will have gone home believing they got value for money.

A word also for the Sports Club Manager Paul Brooke and his staff who prior to the evening's event had to contend with around 400 guests post funeral and the turn around was made easy and credit has to go to Paul and the girls on the night who were polite, attentive and helpful with waitress service a big plus.

Steve Midgley and Antony Lee donated brilliant 'booze hampers' that were 'snapped up' both in the auction and the raffle at the Cricket Section Annual Dinner

Top, top night at Cleck’!

Kevin Kendricks made an immediate and lasting impression at Moorend on Saturday night with a top-drawer performance in front of a full function room of around 120 guests.

The evening was a success in every way and organiser Dave Worrall and his cricket committee can be proud of an evening that saw people dancing from the start, enjoying a pie & peas supper and in an atmosphere that was hectic but friendly and thoroughly enjoyable.

The soul and motown man was accompanied by an equally talented singer whilst the level of support around the room was incredible, from the bar staff and the girls serving food to Sports Club Manager Paul Brooke who's had a real baptism of fire to his first week or so at the helm but he too should be delighted at what was a magnificent event.

On the night, the Cricket section was well represented from within the camp with a number of First Team players there including Andrew Deegan’s table of 15 with members of his family enjoying a brilliant night, which was nice to see following their difficult last few months after the sad passing of Deeg’s mumSharon whose memory will remain with everyone at Cleckheaton Cricket Club.

Gary Blackburn and Martin Evans were other familiar faces that witnessed Dave Worrall’s family and friends accounting for around 30 guests plus his granddaughter Lauren did a sterling job collecting entrance money on the door and behind the counter in the kitchen.

Recently appointed Juniors Manager Russ Noble along with his son Steven sold raffle tickets in enthusiastic fashion whilst regulars such as the Cricket Chairman Ian Gatenby, committee memberSteve Midgley and his party gave their support and it was good to see former Sports Club Bar Manager Mick Collins able to enjoy his night without having to pull a few pints and Club stalwart Keith Johnstonewas leaning on the bar with a contenented grin all night!

And there were so many others too numerous to mention that made the evening simply fantastic!

The Kevin Kendricks night brought smiles to everyone's faces!

On Saturday June 17th the ladies luncheon takes place in conjunction with the Sports Club with more details to follow soon.

Thirty years on former Skipper and Chairman now in administrative role!

When Dave Worrall was the Captain of Windhill Cricket Club as a big hitting batsman during his mid-30s little did he know then - that in 2017 - he’d be overseeing a Saturday night fund-raising event in a purely administrative role.

But the former Cleck’ Chairman for over 20 years, who was once-upon-a-time in charge of a Windhillteam who had quite a few characters in their ranks as well as Dave being the figurehead on and off-the-field at Moorend for well over two decades, now sees himself acquiring guests for evenings with and dinners and the likes, a vital job that’s not to be sniffed at.

However, looking back to those halcyon Bradford League Second Division days, Dave was part of a decent second tier outfit and a side that had a great deal of fun and made a number of opponents run scared!

Former Somerset opener Tony Clarkson, who later became a First Class umpire, was a true gentleman and arguably one of the best ever players to play in the Bradford League as he oozed class. Paul Wiseman as everyone knows never shirked a challenge and his ferocious fast bowling was at times phenomenal! Dave was a leader who led by example and a batsman who’d rather be hit by a fast bowler and grin at his opponent rather than grimace but more often than not fell to the spinner after trying to send the ball in to Baildon from Shipley!!

Nowadays, Dave is content to hand over the Chairman reins at Cleck' to Ian Gatenby but he’s still very much involved and this Saturday’s fund-raising night looks set to go down an absolute storm!

The above outfit might not have won Titles or Trophies but they played hard, entertaining cricket and made sure that bar proceeds were plentiful!

Sponsorship comes from many angles!

Without sponsors the Cricket Section would flounder financially and the Club is grateful to a number of contributors.

Stanley Cars are in their fourth term as the Main Sponsor whilst Carr Mills Business CentreThe Counting House and Leading Edge along with Mr Scratchings has given additional support and now players Mally and Ian Nicholson have come on board.

The afore-mentioned have given Cleck’ a tremendous foundation on which to build with continued fund-raising. On that particular subject the Kevin Kendricks evening is going well with around 70 promises to date but more numbers are required! The First Team in general alongside player Andrew Deegan have put in a mammoth effort with Deeg's having 15 guests and the players accounting for at least 10 guests and organiser Dave Worrall has managed to bring together his family and friends to swell the numbers.

The Cleck' Annual Dinner on Friday March 3rd is open to bookings with full details under the Events Section.

It is hoped for a full house in the function room on Saturday Feb' 4th

The Club thanks also one-time sponsors Robert Watts' Estate Agents for their support in past years, which has now ceased and many others have given support previously and the door is always open for previous sponsors and of course newcomers as the Cricket Section at Cleck' and the Bradford Leagueprogresses.

**Both Mally and Ian Nicholson are proprietors of a successful carpet fitting business and they have very kindly put something back in to the Club by agreeing a sponsorship deal, which is a brilliant gesture from the guys**


Brothers, teammates and also business partners Mally and Ian Nicholson are amongst the Cricket Section's sponsors

Nico’ returns to Cleck’

Neil Nicholson has agreed to rejoin 



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