Yorkshire Schools Cricket Association - Annual Report 2015
It was another eventful season with plenty to celebrate. The 15’s battled their way through to the ECB finals at Kibworth to finish 3rd. The 14’s won their Taunton Festival unbeaten. The 13’s enjoyed a brilliant season undefeated and won their Taunton Festival for the third year as well as the ESCA Northern Counties Championship. The 11’s won their Taunton Festival for the 4th time and lost only 2 matches by close margins. There was a total of 210 matches played during the season.
“15 A” – P15 W8 L5 D2 – This was an enjoyable and indeed successful year with no fewer than 23 boys featuring through the season – a marvellous advert for cricket development. After a sound performance in the opening cup match against Durham there followed two salutary lessons with defeats by Lancashire and Cheshire. The response to that wake up call produced excellent victories over Nottingham twice, Cheshire & Durham. The final group match against Lancashire confirmed their superiority and in the Royal London ECB Cup Final they overcame Surrey. As northern runners up we were drawn against West winners Wales in the quarter final and won with a convincing performance at Pontypool to reach the Kibworth finals and a semi final against Surrey where a score of 222-6 in difficult conditions was not quite enough as the match swung one way and the other with victory snatched from us by a Duckworth/Lewis calculation. We then took 3rd place in the play off with a clear victory over Essex. Our 2 day matches against Wales & Durham were both drawn. Team Manager Andy Rowsell with coaches James Wiggan, Andrew Chadwick & Bob Wincer
“15 B” – P19 W13 L3 Ab3 – The team enjoyed a splendid year and in total 23 boys were given the opportunity of playing and developing their cricketing skills. By the end of the season the team had gelled into a fine side. They played some terrific cricket and much of this was evident as the season progressed. Most interestingly some of the newcomers were only playing at district level in the early part of the season. 48 boys played for north, east, south & west teams against 15b and a number pushed their way into the team via those district games or were picked up through other scouting methods. Moreover they held their places and prospered greatly with some playing so well that they made their way into the A team. The 3 matches lost to Lancs, Warks and Cumbria were close affairs with our boys in winning positions on each occasion. In terms of batting, several players excelled with left handers Lewis Pike (Oakwood HS) and Rory France (Shelley Coll) forcing their way into the A side which reached the ECB finals day at Kibworth. Wahab Mirza (Samuel Lister) quickly established himself as a opening bowler to be reckoned with and was soon promoted to the A side where he stayed. Billy Whitford (Bingley GS) showed himself as a valuable all rounder and leading wicket taker with 20w along with valuable runs. Ben Shufflebotham (Shelley Coll) bowled his left arm spin with great enthusiasm and took the bowling award. The side was beautifully led by Adarsh Vani (QEGS) who showed excellent potential. All in all a wonderful season, great team spirit and a marvellous advert for the future of Schools Cricket Team Manager Bob Wincer with Coaches Peter Hepworth & Graham Orange.
“14 A” – P23 W14 L5 Ab2 C2 – A successful season in certain respects but with 5 defeats some questions need to be answered. There were numerous injuries and unavailability resulting in 24 players being used through the season. Bowling generally was our strength although extras contributed to our downfall in some matches. The pace attack was good with Dominic Leech (Nunthorpe Academy), George Hill (Sedbergh) Vikram Sharma (Grammar School at Leeds) and Dan Ward (Ryedale) accumulating 62 wickets. The spin department of Harry Sullivan (Temple Moor) Harry Harding (Stokesley) and Craig Robinson (Harrogate GS) also did a fine job in taking another 62 wickets. The batting was held together by James Wharton (Holmfirth HS) 761 runs, Elliot Audsley (Grammar School at Leeds) 416, George Hill 379 and Louis Horsfield (Ermysted’s GS) 377. Many of the boys got good starts but failed to go on to make bigger totals. The high note of the season was retention of the winners shield at the Taunton Festival with 4 victories – fifth day abandoned through rain. James Wharton captained the team and showed good understanding and knowledge of the game. As always there is room for improvement particularly in the field and this area needs some attention for the future. Team Manager/Coach Tony Pickersgill, Coaches Jack Bethel and Jim Love
“14 B” – P19 W11 L7 Ab1 – The season started with a series of matches against other squads (15b, 14a, 13a) which proved very competitive and extremely valuable in assessing the squads capabilities. The first county match was against Lancashire and was won in convincing style with fine performances all round. The team continued to play some good cricket with excellent returns. Our two matches against Lincolnshire A (who will move up to the ECB15A group next year) were both lost but only by narrow margins. The Festival at Scarborough was of course a highlight with our boys reaching the final against North Yorkshire containing 4 A & 5 B players. It was an intriguing final on the main square at North Marine Road and will have been a great experience for all 22 yorkshire boys. The outstanding performers were Sam Winter (Richmond School) leading run scorer for the batting award, Harrison Wood (Lady Lumleys) with 20 wkts for the bowling award, and Oliver Riley (Tadcaster GS) performance award. Captain was Will Hutchinson (Lady Lumley’s) who led the side well. Team Manager/Coach James Wiggan & Coach Bren Terry
“13 A” – P18 W18 – This has been an outstandingly successful season achieved by a talented and resourceful side who swept aside every other team they encountered, winning both the Taunton Festival and the Northern Counties Championship. To go through a season with 18 games undefeated is a new record. Harry Anderson (Brigshaw HS), Matthew Revis (Ilkley GS) and Finlay Bean (Ripon GS) each scored over 500 runs, another record. Three bowlers took over 20 wickets, a similar record. Lewis O’Donnell (Ripon GS) took 25 as did Harry Sullivan (Temple Moor HS) who set a new high for an under 12 playing up. Chris Wood (St.Peter’s, York) took 32 a total only two others have ever surpassed. Harry Anderson held 16 outfield catches, seven more than anyone previously. Josh Neal (Brigshaw HS) hit twenty 6’s, considerably more than anyone before. Our two keepers Harry Duke (QEGS) and Josh Neal (Brigshaw HS) totalled 28 dismissals between them, eleven more than in any other season. The success of the team was not achieved solely by the players mentioned above as it was a fantastic team effort. Our batting was generally solid throughout and occasionally spectacular. However, the team’s conversion rate percentage (converting 20’s to 50’s) was poor and must be addressed. The bowling was relentlessly accurate and penetrative. There were no weak links and no respite once a successful bowler had finished his spell. The most remarkable statistic of all is that no team managed to score a hundred runs against our attack during the last eight matches. Catching in support of our bowlers was superb. There were too many seemingly impossible ones taken to recount here. Our ground fielding early on was below standard but improved as the season progressed and was significantly superior to our opponents in the Championship final. The captain Matthew Revis grew into the job as the season progressed and set increasingly good fields which also contributed to the fact that the opposition rarely gained momentum. Only two teams managed to score 150 against us, both at Taunton on excellent batting strips. Never the less, throwing is one area which let the team down somewhat and several players will need to work on their technique if they are to progress to a higher level. Team Manager Keith Dickson and Coaches Ghulam Rafique & Ronnie Hudson
“13 B” – P19 W16 L2 Ab1 – This was another successful season with a very strong year group. The playing record is the best since this squad was introduced in 2007 which is especially pleasing against other county “A” teams. Once again the Taunton Festival was the highlight of the season and a great experience for the boys. To finish as runners up with just one defeat against Kent the eventual winners was a really good outcome – Kent were undefeated all season. Arjun Ramkumar (Prince Henry’s GS) was a model of consistency and established a record for the squad with 662 runs including 2 centuries and 3 fifties. The batting otherwise was a little disappointing but the bowling had great depth and variation with 8 boys making their mark led by new boy James Kelly (Richmond School) with 22 wkts of left arm spin. Charlie Bourne (High Storrs) took 14 wkts and was outstanding in the field with 7 catches & 3 run outs. Aidan Langley (Rodillian Academy) took the all rounder award with 360 runs and 19 wkts whilst Captain Archie Greaves (Scissett Middle) led from the front weighing in with 263 runs and 15 wkts. This was a good fielding side with some stunning catches being taken. There was a strong work ethic which produced some magnificent performances making them the outstanding squad since its formation 9 years ago. Team Manager/Coach Dick Whaley & Asst Manager Linda Whaley with Coach Tharindu Perera.
“12 A” – P17 W8 L5 LD1 Ab3 – The team had an inconsistent season but there were plenty of fine individual performances. Romir Singh (Birkdale) was the leading run scorer with 594 with Daniel Ford (Brigshaw HS) on 488 - both scoring a century. Daniel’s winning knock of 115 not out against Cheshire was the best ever innings at this level. Sam Elstone (Hymers College) captained the side and scored 265 runs. Matthew Bird (Rossett) led the bowling with 18 wkts supported by Ben Stokes (Harrogate GS) 17 who was very accurate throughout the season. Team Manager Simon Horkin & Coaches Tom Smith, Amjad Hussain, Mark Harrison & Richard Sullivan
“12 B” – P14 W11 L2 Ab1 – A successful season with just two defeats, one against North Yorkshire containing 5 members of the 12a team and the other against Nottinghamshire in the final of the Oundle Festival. One highlight at Oundle was breaking a 21 year record highest total with 372-4 and also beating Lancashire. Louis Becket (Scarboro Coll) made 3 consecutive centuries from just 59, 63 & 59 deliveries with a top score of 157 not out. Gavin Whipp (Ryburn Valley HS) won the Oundle batting award including a century whilst skipper Cain Robb (Driffield School) scored his maiden century. Aneeq Hamdani (Bradford GS) had two 5 wicket hauls. The Team grew with maturity as the season progressed and embraced a positive approach. Team Manager Phil Chapman & Coach Roy Chapman
"11A" - P19 W16 L2 Ab1 – Another fine season although not quite reaching the heights of the previous two years unbeaten records. The team improved with every game and showed their fighting spirit on numerous occasions by winning many of the close fought encounters. The depth and variation of bowling together with excellent fielding was the team’s forte. Batting was the weakest discipline but there were some outstanding performances. The Taunton Festival was again the highlight of the season with victory for the fourth successive year. The two losses against Warwickshire & Wales were very close encounters. The two victories against Lancashire were naturally most satisfying. Awards - Batting - Matthew Weston (Brooksbank School), Bowling - Ben Walsh (St.Wilfrid’s Cath HS), Fielding - Max Adams (QEGS), All round performance - Harry Watkinson (All Saints’ RC, York), Most Improved - Noah Priestley (Todmorden HS). The Alan & Linda Shaw Trophy awarded for the outstanding performance of the season at any age group went to Matthew Weston for his 757 runs @ 50 including two centuries and passing the fifty mark on 8 occasions with 4 not outs – a great achievement. Team Manager/Coach Dick Whaley & Asst Manager Linda Whaley and Coach Haydon Jackson
“11 B” – P17 W9 L5 Ab1 C2 – A challenging season with a measure of success the highlight being the tour to Royal Hospital School near Ipswich and beating a strong Lancashire side on their own patch.
Inconsistency in the batting hampered the team’s ability to post competitive scores with several alarming collapses which put the bowlers under immense pressure. That they were able to win most of these with scores of below three figures was indicative of astute captaincy by Eliot Bunn (Benton Park) who also won the special award for taking 4-9 v Leicestershire. The seam bowlers also deserve special mention with Lewis Hogg (Norton JS), Kishtiq Kapote (Highfield PS), Oliver Box (Normanton JS) and latterly Nicolas Kelly (Lealholm,Whitby) all keeping a tight rein on the scoring but the stand out bowler was Max Didgiunitis (Rishworth Sch) who took the bowling award with several key spells when the pressure was on. The fielding was excellent with several coaches on tour commenting on our athleticism where our catching and throwing won us several games which would have been lost. The fielding award however went to wicket keeper Harry Christy (St Aidan's) who was impressive behind the sticks with a number of great stumpings and he also scored runs at a rapid rate in the middle order. Batting was a particular weakness of the team all season which the boys will have to address if they want to progress, with too many loose shots and careless dismissals when set. However Yash Vagadia (Teeside HS) won the batting award with a string of consistent performances including an excellent fifty against Lancashire on a testing wicket. Sheriyar Ali (St.Bedes RC) also deserves mention for a productive end to the season including a fine 77 on tour. All in all a decent season from the boys who were a credit to Yorkshire on and off the field. Team Manager Mark Loker, Coaches Mark Welford & George Saville
“10 A” – P11 W8 L3 – A most satisfactory season albeit with three close matches lost against Lancs, Warks & Surrey. The transition from pairs cricket to 40 overs hardball is not easy for the boys but there were excellent wins over Lancs, Leics, Berks & Devon. The Festival at Taunton was most enjoyable and successful with a nail biter against Surrey which did not quite go our way, but a tremendous match. Alex Cree with 413 runs including 125 against Leics was the star performer and he also kept wicket very well. Awards : Batting - Alex Cree (Methley PS), Bowling - Caleb Bradford (Holy Trinity JS, Ripon), Fielding - Scott Godden (QEGS), All rounder - Mackenzie Harmon (Easington PS, Hull), Most Improved - Charlie McMurran (Methley PS) Team Manager Steve Holliday and Coaches Phil Chapman & Chris Holliday
“10 B” - P14 W7 L4 Ab3 - The second season for this group was again most rewarding with good performances from all of the boys who will be looking to improve with winter nets ready for the new season as u11’s where perhaps four players will be pushing for “A” team recognition. The Repton Festival was a great experience for the boys although affected by rain and featured an experiment with a 16 yard pitch. Captain was Will Chapman (Shawlands PS) who showed sound knowledge and set a fine example in the field. Ted Hutchings (St.Thomas of Canterbury RCPS, Sheffield) took the batting award, Ben Taylor (Kirk Sandall JS, Doncaster) the bowling award, Jack Redshaw (Crayke PS, Easingwold) the fielding award and Will Nicholson (Low Ash PS) the all round performance award. Team Manager John Green and Coaches Roy Chapman & Haydon Jackson
“19” – P5 W2 L3 – For the first time in its 46 year history the St Peter’s Festival involved a Yorkshire u19 team that could include any u19 player, rather than those still attending school. This adjustment to the selection process proved to be a positive one and meant that the u19 season would also include a series of two day fixtures throughout July and August that had previously been part of the Yorkshire Cricket Board progamme. These included MCC, Lancashire, Middlesex, Derbyshire, Durham and Warwickshire.
Following trials at Woodlands, Harrogate and a practice match at Undercliffe a 15 man squad was selected with Brad Birkhead (Rastrick CC) as captain and Josh Holling (Pudsey Congs) as Vice-captain. We were pleased to include New South Wales Combined High Schools from Australia within the Festival as well as Lincolnshire, Durham, Yorkshire Development XI and MCC. The Laurie Bennett award for the player’s player of the week went to Patrick Dixon (Woodhouse Grove) and the new Jim Harkin Award went to Lewis Kenworthy (Huddersfield New College) for his 5-30 against Lincolnshire. There were 38 nominations received from affiliated schools. Team Manager Ian Frost (Woodhouse Grove) & Coach Glenn Roberts (Silcoates School)
The Association was again well supported on the financial front by the John Featherstone Memorial Foundation (Headingley Bookstall) and The Friends of Yorkshire Schools including gift aid. Sadly our long term sponsor P&A went into administration. There were 149 schools affiliated. The junior & senior presentation dinners were both held at Headingley with attendances of 320 and 275 where Paul Grayson was guest speaker for the senior event. Karl Carver and James Wainman (former YSCA boys) attended the junior evening and made the presentations and also posed for photos with each squad along with the County Championship Trophy. Support for the Association was also forthcoming from the YCC Charitable Youth Trust, Patrons Nick Elliot, Trevor & Jennifer Bryan, Philip & Patsy Akroyd, David Crowther, Kevin & Sarah Grace, Paul & Karen Budge and Steve Oldham along with a number of others including parents who made significant financial contributions. Our umpires, coaches and officials also gave unstintingly of their time along with parents who do so much in transporting the boys to the various matches. We are also fortunate in being able to call upon the many Clubs who so freely place their facilities at our disposal. The YSCA fixture booklet was again very well received. The number of entries from Yorkshire into ESCA national schools competitions was as usual the highest of any County and reflects great credit on the officials who administer each of our County competitions. The u15 T20 drew 93 entries (organized by Gary Hebden) and the u14 ESCA Trophy 69 entries run by Ian Gould (Ashville College). The u12 David English Bunbury Cup attracted 66 schools and was run by Secretary Harold Galley. The Yorkshire Post u13 Schools Challenge with the semi-finals and final played at Headingley (under the guidance of Chairman Dr. Bernard Knowles) was a very special day and a great privilege to play on a test match venue with electronic scoreboards - an experience the boys will treasure for many years with 82 schools taking part.
National Schools u19 20/20 Trophy……Woodhouse Grove (Bradford) reached the national quarter final …with victories over Ashville, Pocklington, Silcoates and St.Peter’s losing to Sedbergh by 6 runs.
ESCA Yorkshire u15 20/20 Trophy……….…Birkdale School (Sheffield) beat St.Peter’s School (York)
ESCA u14 Barbara Woolley Trophy…………………….QEGS (Wakefield) beat Prince Henry’s Grammar School
Yorkshire Post u13 Cricket Challenge…………………Benton Park School beat Brigshaw High School with, Honley High School 3rd and Ermysted’s Grammar Schooll 4th on Finals day at Headingley
ESCA David English u12 Bunbury Cup……………… Birkdale (Sheffield) beat Grammar School at Leeds
ESCA u11 Hardball - Yorkshire winners………..……Birkdale (Sheffield) – who were Oakham Finalists