Accentuate the positive

20 June 2019 News 3158
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It's the 19th June 2019. The learning curve is steep. I knew it wouldn't be easy. Thornton Cleveleys Cricket Club is alive and well. We are hosting the AllStars programme on Friday evenings where 20+ young boys and girls have great fun learning the basic skills of cricket, aided ably by parents and grandparents. We decided to give priority to AllStars this year, holding the sessions close to the pavilion in order that the adults could make full use of the facilities our club has to offer. I hope they are enjoying their Friday evenings with us.

But we're nearly at midsummer -so cricket matches can start a little later. Consequently, we have a T20 fixture on Thursday 20th June starting at 7pm against Kirkham, needing a win to progress to finals day.

On Friday after AllStars, we have an Under 15 game against Chorley, starting at 6.45. Please try to support our teams of all ages.

Our first team continue to win matches -unbeaten so far and only thwarted on two occasions by the weather. Our second and third teams continue to remain competitive, in spite of the difficulty encountered on a weekly basis fielding our strongest teams. The best ability is availability. And then our Sunday team have set great standards under the captaincy of Sam Curwen. We made a concious decision at the start of the season to make this team an Under 21 team, and the lads have really come together as a group -training together on Friday nights and becoming a good bunch of lads who enjoy each others company. Again, please make the effort to watch this team when you can -they're a credit to the club.

We play a quarter-final of the prestigious Meyler Cup on Sunday 23rd at home to Torrisholme, start time 1.30. Hopefully the sun will shine on us and we can make further progress.

The onset of summer brings hedge growth and we continually seek the help of our members to keep our ground looking the best it can be, with bench seating for spectators free of brambles etc. Please feel free to adopt a bench and look after it!

We have worked hard to provide our players with a great facility and atmosphere in which to play sport. New practice netting has been erected to alleviate ongoing issues with our neighbours -it seems to be working, and I'm pleased about that. The bar has been revitalised with new products and new pricing. We aren't standing still and have now introduced Maltsmith's IPA, a refreshingly different product. The cask ales seem to have been well received -look out for more guests through the summer. Brian's gin bowls have been well received -impressing the Whitley Neill rep!

The club is still reliant on function bookings to enhance our commercial viability whilst raising the profile of the club in the local community. You'd be surprised how many people don't know where we are! In an ideal world, these function bookings would have little impact on the use of our club by our members -and generally that is the case. Where (typically) christenings are hosted on a Sunday during cricket matches, there can be issues created by rain. It doesn't happen often but all I ask is that our members are respectful to the requirements of a visiting party. On most occasions, the visiting party want to be able to cast their eyes over a game of cricket. To ALL playing members, I ask that you allow these functions to take place without disruption -that does not mean you are not welcome to come into the club. This has been the case since the new clubhouse was built -and it still requires this income stream to sustain it.

So let's keep things moving onwards and upwards. Put aside the things we aren't quite getting right yet -but please keep raising matters that need our attention. There was an excellent article in the Guardian a few weeks ago featuring case studies from 3 cricket clubs. Lowerhouse in the Lancashire League -where young ladies watch cricket! Leicestershire CC who claim they only survive financially on cake sales. A self-aware cricketer who decided the best contribution he could make to his club was to  be the media man. All three cases resonated with me -these are all factors that can affect clubs at all levels. But in essence the common theme is quite stark -cricket clubs need people to give freely of their time, be it playing, weeding, running the bar, administration, catering, coaching. 

I've found the last couple of weeks quite challenging. Sometimes in life you go the extra yard and get duly rewarded or well thought of. Sometimes, it gets thrown back in your face. I am honoured to be following in the footsteps of Gerald Brown as Chairman of this cricket club. And for all the negative energy I have encountered recently, I more highly prize the words of one of our senior members last Saturday -'You're doing a great job'. I choose to accentuate the positive.

Dave Rolinson

TCCC Chairman

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