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Monmouth Cricket Club make Herefordshire youth representative matches offer
MONMOUTH might have left the Herefordshire cricket pyramid structure earlier this year, but they don’t want to be forgotten in the county.
The club, who won the Marches League and cup double for three successive seasons, have offered to host Herefordshire representative youth matches.
They competed alongside Herefordshire clubs for 18 years, having joined the Marches League in 1993 and then switching to the Worcestershire County League in 2006.
But Monmouth swapped the M5 for the M4 this summer after rejoining the Cricket Wales structure in January.
“Herefordshire cricket has been very good to us,” said chairman Martin Newell.
“We joined the Marches League in its second year, in 1993, at a time when we were rebuilding as a club.
“The likes of Dan Head, Graham Hyde and Jonathan Jones all played for the Marches League representative team and Idris Leonard played for Herefordshire Over 50s.
“Gordon Grey, who is now the club’s groundsman, is a former chairman of the Marches League and we made many friends at many Herefordshire clubs.”
Newell added: “We recently hosted a Gwent youth match at our ground and we’ve made the same offer to Herefordshire Cricket.
“If we can be of any assistance in hosting Herefordshire youth matches, we’d be happy to help.”
Monmouth have been fielding their under-9 team in the summer’s Herefordshire Soft-Ball Festivals.
And some of the club’s coaches have been taking courses with Herefordshire Cricket, including Tracy Hodgson, whose brother is former England spinner Ashley Giles.
Hereford-based Steve Watkins, Monmouthshire’s cricket development officer, will be speaking to the club’s coaches next Wednesday night as part of the ECB Clubmark process.
On the field, the club’s senior sides are adjusting to life in the Glamorgan and Monmouthshire League Division Three.
Monmouth have lost a couple of experienced players since the move, including Cheltenham-based Dan Head, now the vice-captain at Colwall.
The Welsh league has a different points system and is based on average points.
It does not have draws — instead, the matches are either won or lost.
Monmouth are third in the table in a rain-hit summer which has seen them win four times from five outings.
The border outfit were the only club to beat the wet weather on Saturday in the Glamorgan and Monmouthshire League.
They played a 30 overs-aside match against Dinas Powys and collected a 20- point haul from a 135-run home triumph.
Teenager Matthew Jones carried his bat for 81, and Josh Grey hit 69, in Monmouth’s 228-4 before former Ross player Dan Risk (3-11) and skipper Paul Swingwood (3-18) helped dismiss Dinas Powys for 93.
“The Worcestershire League and the clubs were also great to us and some of our lads have been up to watch Colwall this summer.
“One player who I am sure will have fond memories of Monmouth Cricket Club is Adrian Hope, who used to play for Luctonians.
“He once took all 10 wickets in a league match at Monmouth — and that hasn’t happened very often.”