Our thriving junior section had another fantastic season, with approaching one hundred youngsters, both boys and girls, across all our age groups, enjoying some wonderful summery Instow Monday practice evenings at one of the most picturesque grounds in the world!
Our numbers look set to grow again this year with the launch of the ECB’s All Stars Cricket initiative aimed at 5-8 year olds (boys and girls) and designed to ignite a lifelong passion for the game we all love. We have become a recognised centre for this programme, and have created a new age-group to be able to run these sessions alongside the rest of our juniors on Monday evenings. If you have any friends or family that have 5-8 year olds who might like to start their cricketing journey with us, then be sure to sign up at https://www.ecb.co.uk/play/all-stars (watch out for slightly different dates and times for the All-Stars group). We also welcome new players in all age groups of all levels of previous cricketing experience.
At the other end of the spectrum, it was particularly rewarding to see some recent graduates of our academy system make an impact in senior adult cricket. Well done to Isaac Windley, Jay Rothery, Archie Popham, Alex Heath, Nathan Ware, and Jed Foster to name but a few. Although we want to be successful in the junior league and cup competitions, our primary aim is to ensure we maximise player participation and enjoyment, developing as many juniors as possible into future senior mens and ladies regulars, retaining their love for cricket above all the other distractions out there these days!
There is always room for improvement but I think we are getting the balance about right in creating an environment to enable all the juniors to flourish and also enjoying some success in the competitions.
Our U9 group experienced a brilliant season, playing a number of friendly matches where many youngsters enjoyed their first taste of proper cricket matches and they had a blast! They took that energy and skill into their league matches, finishing as champions of the U9 league.
Our U10s also finished champions although unfortunately there was a noticeable lack of teams and matches for this age group. This looks set to change in 2017 with the addition of both Holsworthy and Ilfracombe into the U10 league, which is great news.
Our U11s made a late charge towards the title in 2016 but in the end had to settle for a runner-up spot, their mature all round team performances indicate a bright future for this group as they move into U12 and U13 cricket.
Although there is no U12 league, there is a cup competition known as the Graham Harris Cup which I am delighted to say reaches its 25th anniversary in 2017 and is held in memory and recognition of someone who did so much for junior cricket at our own club and youth cricket in the wider North Devon cricketing community. Our own U12 team were unlucky to fall at the Semi-Final stage this year, let’s hope we can go one better in 2017 as it would be a fitting tribute if our own team could grace the final of this brilliant competition in its 25th year.
Our U13 team had a cricketing summer to remember, playing 11 matches across all competitions and only tasting defeat once to Exeter in the Semi-Final of the ECB All Devon Cup. The team were absolutely brilliant all summer enjoying a perfect 7 from 7 in the league, playing some wonderful cricket along the way including posting an incredible 182-0 from 20 overs vs. Filleigh. During the season, the team used 23 different players and needed each and every one of them. There were 3 ever-presents across the entire campaign – Oliver Callaghan, Ethan Cross and captain Nathan Ware with Sam Wright, Kevin Johnson and Jack Sargent only missing 1 match showing extraordinary commitment to the club and team.
The U15s ended up a very credible 4th in their league just 3 points of 3rd spot. It proved difficult to get all our older U15s available for all our matches, if we had been able to then we would have been pushing the top 2 much closer. Well done to the younger players who stepped in and acquitted themselves superbly when called upon and gained invaluable experience of playing at a higher level.
You can read more about the leagues including more on the U13’s stellar season at http://ndyca.co.uk. We rounded off the junior season with an excellent junior presentation nights catered superbly as usual by Sarah Kelly and her team. The 2016 award winners are listed below. Well done to them, but also to each and every one of our young players for all their tremendous
|Best Bowler||Joshua Arthur||Ben Carter||James Evans||Nathan Ware||Alex Heath|
|Best Batsman||Amos Waters||Ollie George||Will Popham||Sam Wright||Jay Rothery|
|Best Fielder||Navindu Finley||Jack Balsdon||Ben Scarrett||Sam Copsey||Fred Clements|
|Most Improved||Haste Leighton||Aaron Johnson||Toby Shephard-Blandy||Joe Thompson||Kevin Johnson|
|Club Award||Vanderbona Fairbrother||Oscar Meech||Sion Grand||Ethan Cross||Isaac Windley|
At this point I’d like to thank all those that supported or managed our teams in 2016: Russ Young,
Clare Arthur, Rob Meech, Adrian Scarrett, Steve Popham and Dave Rothery. We are blessed with a
great set of age-group managers and I am delighted I have managed to retain their services for next
year. As a club and as parents we should be very grateful for the time and effort that goes into
organising junior teams and matches as believe me – it’s not that easy! Please help them out by
being as responsive and supportive as possible.
2016 NDCC Junior Section Age Group Managers
U9’s – Clare Arthur Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Tel: 07967 662474
U10’s – Rob Meech Email: email@example.com Tel: 07813 458351
U11’s – Steve Popham firstname.lastname@example.org Tel: 07890 732045
U12’s – Adrian Scarrett Email: email@example.com Tel: 07850 900239
U13’s – Adrian Scarrett Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Tel: 07850 900239
U15’s – Stuart Ware Email: email@example.com Tel: 07855 752394
Welfare Officers- Hayley Popham 07808 203056/Sarah Ware 07954 697116
Finally, I would like to thank our great groundsman Andrew Cameron, for producing pitches for our juniors often at short notice, and all our superb coaches who put on the fantastic sessions on Monday nights. In particular, I’d like to thank Barney Huxtable and Max Curtis whose wonderful rapport with, and encouragement of, all our age groups, but particularly our academy group, will be greatly missed this year, as they continue their studies in Cardiff and Bristol respectively. We look forward to welcoming them back again from both a playing and coaching perspective soon!
We have a terrific facility and a club that is the envy of many, and with the introduction of the all-stars cricket initiative there is again much to be excited about this year. Remember to find and follow us on Facebook and Twitter to keep up to date with our exploits.
Have and fantastic summer and I look forward to seeing you at the club enjoying a drink, the sunshine and the cricket (in no particular order)!
Chairman Junior Section – 07855 752394
Monday night training
Colts coaching sessions are held every Monday evening. Registration is at 6pm for ALL age groups this year. There will be a lead coach for each age group. Sarah and her team will be providing a barbecue each evening and the bar will of course be open! Training will run to 7.45pm each week weather permitting.
The first outdoor training session will be on Monday April 24th.
NDCC Junior Clothing
New Junior NDCC playing kit is available from the Devon County Sports website – see the How to Order NDCC cricket clothing and equipment section.
Summer Camp As well as Monday evening, the plan this year is to run a Summer Camp 9am-1pm from Tuesday 1st August to Wednesday 3rd August. Subject to demand and the availability of coaches, further summer camps may also happen. There will be more information on this during the season.
This year we shall be inviting a selection of our finest young players (13 to 15 year olds who are eligible to play adult cricket) to train with the adults on a Wednesday evening. These sessions start at 6pm. As well as the new bowling machine purchased last season, this year the club has invested in a second roll-on net, so on a Wednesday evening we can now train with 2 roll-on nets; one will be dedicated to the 1st XI squad and the other will be for the rest of the club players and our young developing players.
What the club shall do for you
What the club expects from you