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Week 1 Preview

man in white jersey shirt and pants holding cricket bat

It has been so long since Stretford played any cricket that I totally forgot how to write a preview for the upcoming week. I genuinely had to ask management members for a memory jog and yet, there has been so much going on. It shows how much work has been going on behind the scenes that we’ve been totally wrapped up in it. I’m now suitably exercised.

Last weekend a group of hardy and committed members completed a marathon bike ride around 35 GMCL cricket grounds, covering over 70 miles in the process. It was very hard going for the lads but so rewarding at the finish. Delierious head shaking, knowing nods of tiredness and John Wayne sideways shuffling were tell tail signs of just how much of a challenge this proved to be be but we are delighted to say that the fundraising target of £2500.00 is in sight. Thank you to Robert Renforth for pulling this together, all people who took part, helpers and of course everyone who donated.

A large amount of work has gone into getting the club ready to begin the cricket season. I would like to pay tribute to Ian Holding and Phil Spencer who have been ever present during the lockdown keeping the club in tip-top condition. It was clear to see while taking part in the bike ride that our ground is head and shoulders above many in the local area and we all appreciate the hard work they put in. If anyone would like a crash course (sorry poor choice of phrase) in using a mower or strimmer then I am sure they will be pleased for your help even if this was for a couple of hours per week or month.

The club is satisfied that it has met all the requirements to host cricket games and have organised training sessions in a COVID secure environment. The club has purchased temporary changing rooms for players in the form of gazebos and all indoor access to the club other than the disabled toilet is not accesible. The bar is now located outside near to the scorebox and is card only. Coffee, tea, snacks and soft drinks are also available from there. Hand gel is available at the gate, bar and toilets and social distancing signs and markers have been put in place. Spectators are more than welcome at the ground to watch all our cricket but must not gather in groups of more than six people if not from the same household. Please bring your family and friends to enjoy the sun and cricket – they may come as your guest up to two times however we encourage everyone to join the club as a social member! Many thanks to John Grant, John Foulkes and Mary Foulkes for getting the club ready.

An incredible amount of work took place in winter to attract new juniors to the section. Despite the delay in restarting the season we are so pleased to see growing numbers in the junior ranks. We have hit a milestone, 50 members. This may not sound like much but its the start of a rebuilding project. Thanks to efforts by Ruth Cotton, Guy Robinson, Robert Renforth, Tom Coulson, George Riddell, Ben Riddell, Ben Lomax and Matt Armstrong for their committment in delivering quality, safe and enjoyable training sessions. Feedback has been very positive so please spread the word.

Our first junior League fixture takes place on Friday night as the U13s, captained by Jamie Cotton play host to Didsbury from 6pm. The bar will be open again and it what better way to relax on a Friday after work by coming down to support the team?! Many new players will be starting their Stretford journey and making their debuts. Come along and give them a cheer!

While the club has been closed to members and the public we have provided storage and work space for Stretford Food Bank which has been an incredible eye opener. The sheer number of people who dedicate their free time into helping vulnerable members of society is amazing. The organistion involved in providing food to the people in only one area is huge. It (unfortunately) seems that Food Banks are here to stay and while Stretford Food Bank may not be around at the club for much longer we hope we can continue a close partnership in the future.

At the weekend the 1stXI host Swinton Moorside from 1pm on Saturday the 2ndXI play Worsley (at Wythenshawe) On Sunday the 3rd XI entertain South West Manchester. If you fancy a run out Sunday morning the U11s play over the meadows at Ashton on Mersey from 9am. We are pleased to welcome back some old faces and new members to the squads, in particular Munir Khan, who is back from his travels around Oldham. Good luck to the new boys.

All seniors must pay subs by by August 1st to be available for selection. You can pay here and view the subscription policy.

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