HEANOR Town Cricket Club held their annual presentations recently and in his address the Chairman, Alan Turner, reflected on a much improved 2011.
The first XI were victorious in the Bayley Cup final at Eckington when they defeated Allestree in front of over 100 travelling supporters.
They disappointingly just missed out on promotion by finishing third in a very competitive league but had enjoyed a good season.
Opening batsman Alistair Dixon, scored an impressive 1,700 runs with five centuries but sadly he is going to be missing in 2012 as he has decided to play his cricket elsewhere in a higher league.
The club wished him well for the future and thanked him for the last four seasons.
The opening partnership of Dixon and 16-year-old Josh Brear had been one of the season’s positive points.
The chairman also thanked the other players and particularly the Captain Andy Brear who had the backing of an enthusiastic, athletic and talented younger side this year.
Mr Turner was also full of praise for Colin Taylor who after 21 seasons at the club felt it was time to retire from league cricket.
During this time he had taken over 1,000 wickets for Heanor and been the scourge of batsmen at many levels.
He added that Colin was an excellent cricketer but was also a genuinely decent person to have in the club and was always popular with everyone.
The second XI had a mediocre season, with some encouraging individual performances.
One of these was the first 50 scored by a female player when Lucy Antcliffe scored a belligerent 58 not out at the Town Ground.
Several under 15 players had gained experience and the signs for the future were encouraging.
Sadly, captain Steve Morley, has decided to stand down after five seasons but Mr Turner praised his commitment in difficult circumstances at times.
There is real optimism for next year and it is pleasing to note several younger players coming into both sides and hoped the players would rise to a challenge under a new leader.
The summer had again been affected by strange weather patterns and had proved very trying at times but he was full of praise for the ground staff of Amber Valley Council and the hard work of Peter Thompson in assisting them to produce a ground which came in for praise from visiting teams and umpires.
He also thanked those involved in pre-season work on the Natwest Cricket Force day and also those involved in the high standard of weekend catering which had been commended by many.
Mr Turner was enthused by the spirit within the club which appeared to be undimmed and he was pleased to note the efforts being made in youth cricket and results were improving. He thanked the coaches, helpers and parents for their motivation and commitment from Derry Packard and Cheryl Bellamy in fund raising and catering.
The awards for the 2011 season were presented as follows;
1st XI Batting Alistair Dixon 1st XI Bowling Kevin Barber
2nd XI Batting Maurice Edwards 2nd XI Bowling Paul Fletcher
The Player of The Year Awards, nominated by the respective Captains, went to Alistair Dixon of the 1st XI and to Paul Fletcher of the 2nd XI. The Brian Morley award for the Individual Outstanding Performance of the Year was presented to Josh Brear for 75 not out opening the batting in the Bayley Cup Final on a difficult wicket.
There were also individual awards for all players of the Under 15 team.
The main awards were presented to
Under 15 Batting Liam Barlow, Under 15 Bowling Lewis Buxton.
Most improved player was Oliver Naylor.
There were also medallions and certificates for under 11 kwik cricketers.
In closing, Mr Turner looked forward to cricket in 2012 and hoped that the club would continue to improve on the field. He did not doubt the good spirit within the Club on and off the field and stated he was pleased to be Chairman of this hard working club.
Special mention was made for the hard work of committee, caterers, scorers, fundraisers, sponsors, social event organisers, youth coaches and anyone who tried to make Heanor Town a happy club and a good place to play cricket. There had been many new players at the Club in 2011 and it took time for all to learn to live with each other and he was keen to extend an open invitation to anyone who was interested in being part of a vibrant club with some of the best facilities in the County.
The new 2nd XI Captain had been elected and this was Chris Moore.
Indoor Nets for senior teams will commence on January 9, at Derby and the Junior Nets commence on January 13 at Ilkeston. A fund raising Race Night is planned for February 11 and the Annual Speakers Evening is in April when the guest speaker will be Joey Jones former footballer with Liverpool and Wales.
Anyone interested in joining the Club should contact Gordon Shaw 01159-322391