I had a very useful meeting with Gareth Davis at Whiston last Thursday, at which we discussed a number of issues. Club chairman Pete Wilson joined us at one point and told me that he is optimistic about Whiston’s chances of making an immediate return to our league. They currently lie second to Appleby Frodingham in the SYSCL Championship, and I wish both clubs the very best for the rest of the season. 
Final man-of-the-match Rob Shaw in action 
SCCC skipper Josh Varley receives the League t20 trophy from Solly Adam 
On Saturday, after our regular morning with Millie, we did some cooking and baking and took a curry round to Gavin & Lucy’s for tea. Baby George is doing well – although all I ever see him do is sleep and feed! It was a very pleasant and relaxing day. 
 
The results on Saturday mainly went to form – with wins for our top three clubs – and it was the game at Wickersley that produced a remarkable result. Treeton’s first innings of 287 would have been enough to win any previous YSPL game, but records are there to be broken, and the home side’s innings has provided us with a new highest successful run chase. Looking at their squad on paper, Wickersley appear to be far too good to be languishing in the lower reaches of the table, and perhaps this result with be the catalyst that results in them fully realising their potential. 
 
On Sunday after breakfast, Kirsty and I set off for Shaw Lane to watch the t20 finals day. By the time we arrived, the Doncaster v Treeton game was all over. I had expected Treeton to put up a good account of themselves, so I was quite surprised – but these things happen in t20, particularly when a team finds itself batting at 10am. I was chatting to Keith Haynes and Chris Cobb, and learned that Greg Norton’s leg injury will certainly keep him out for the remainder of this season and possibly some of next. I really hope not – he is a very good cricketer, Treeton are missing him badly, and I wish him a full and speedy recovery. 
In the second semi, Sheffield Collegiate were too good for Cawthorne, and recorded a comfortable win. That set up a Doncaster v Collegiate final – two of our form teams of the season. The pitch clearly offered some assistance for the bowlers, and Collegiate’s 122-7 turned out to be a good score. Doncaster looked well in the hunt at 88-4, but an amazing catch on the run by Josh Varley off Rob Shaw was probably the decisive moment. Shaw went on to claim a hat-trick and Doncaster’s challenge faded. The Town Fields club have come back very strongly since their relegation in 2016 and now have a strong side – they are our league leaders at the half-way point, and this Sunday they face Cuckney in the ECB National KO regional final. I wish them all the very best for that. 
 
Collegiate, though, regained the trophy they won in 2016 and 2017, and move on to the regional t20 finals at Cleethorpes on 28 July. I hope that it will be third time lucky for them, as they fell at this stage in the two previous years. I think that they have a stronger all round side now, having recruited well in the close season. Shaaiq Choudhry is a key man for them, and he had a very good day with both bat and ball at Shaw Lane. 
 
Barnsley did an excellent job of staging the day and I have already recorded my thanks to them for that. It was only a pity that the rather dodgy weather perhaps put some people off from coming along on the day. It was not particularly warm, but at least the rain held off until the latter stages of the final and we managed to get all the games in without recourse to DLS. I did note that a variety of ‘rain apps’ were in evidence – I hope Kirsty did not see them otherwise she will add them to her phone, and I think that too much information only serves to confuse. 
 
The weather on the day meant that photography conditions were not ideal, but Kirsty still managed to capture the flavour of the day – a selection of her photos can be found on our flickr site at https://www.flickr.com/photos/72019064@N08/albums/with/72157709252286767
 
On Monday I was up early as usual completing a few jobs before one of my eagerly-awaited trips to the Goodmanham Arms. It was not as long a visit as usual – a couple of our colleagues had other commitments – but I manged four pints of my current favourite beer, Hambleton Stallion, to wash down the lunch. The clientele thinned out after the usual lunchtime rush, and, as we relaxed in an atmosphere that a Daily Telegraph review referred to as ‘the quintessence of cosiness’, we agreed that there may be better pubs in the world, but we could not think of one. 
 
On Tuesday, I updated the Rovers stats and wrote my programme article for this Thursday’s derby game, then revised our league format review document for next week’s captains’ meeting and wrote up a description for our intended ‘Participation Manager’ committee role. 
 
Then, yesterday, Kirsty and I took Millie out for the day, starting with a trip to a little working farm that she loves, then up to Bridlington where we played on the beach for an hour before heading to the famous Fish & Chips at 149 to get a late lunch. After taking her home, we went to Craven Park, where I chaired the Heritage Committee meeting, after which one of our members and I did a presentation to one of our monthly open meetings. There was a good attendance, we had plenty of audience participation, and all in all it was a good night of nostalgia. I sometimes think that all we have is nostalgia now. 
Solly Adam presents the t20 trophy to Josh Varley 
 
Tonight is the Premier League Management Board at Darrington – which means that I miss the derby game. Whatever the result, I would rather be there, but duty calls, and I should be at the Board meeting – particularly as we have a presentation from Paul Bedford at ECB about future plans for Premier Leagues. 
I am eagerly awaiting the arrival of the African Plume on Saturday – Kirsty says that the forecast is for temperatures of up to 30 degrees in Wickersley! It will invoke memories of when I visited Northfield Lane last summer – but it won’t last long, so let’s enjoy it whilst we can! 
 
On Monday I am going to Scarborough to watch the Yorkshire game with Richard, a very good friend of 45 years standing. Although my county allegiances are to Northamptonshire, I love Scarborough and always enjoy the occasion of a day at the cricket there. 
 
As I mentioned earlier, Wednesday is the day of our captains’ meeting, which I very much look forward to. As administrators, we must never lose sight of the fact that cricket is about the players, and this meeting is an opportunity for hear their thoughts in discussion about topical issues. 
 
Till next week,  
 
Roger 
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