Mike Arnold arrived at Heywood for the 2000 season after an illustrious career at Milnrow and would go on to play until retiring at the end of the double winning season in 2006. Arnie brought vast experience and no shortage of runs to a young side and would go on to skipper the side in 2002 and 2003 leading the side to the first Wood Cup triumph at the start of that run.
1. What was your favourite game for Heywood?
The Wood Cup Final v Milnrow at Walsden. Great day out from start to finish.
2.What was your favourite away ground?
The Coppice – loved the bounce.
3. Who was the best Pro you played with?
For Heywood, Sherwin. The flawless hundred he made against ‘boro was my favourite innings. He had just drove 200 miles after being on the lash,with no sleep for a 6pm start on a Monday night and smashed a brilliant century.
4. What about the best Pro you played against?
Batsman – Carl Hooper, Bowler – Curtley Ambrose, All rounder – Asif Mujtaba
5. Who was the best amateur you played against?
Batsman – John Punchard. Played the best hook shot I’ve ever seen from an amateur off Hartley Alleyne bowling rockets. Bowler – Marvelous Mel Whittle on a sticky wicket. All rounder – Paul Rocca. Unorthadox batsman with great eye. Used every trick,in and out of the book when bowling.
6. And what about the best amateur you played with?
Batsmen played with: Chaddy, Kev Howard, Simon Bamford, Crossy. Bowler – Dave Norris
7. What was your best on field memory?
Rob Slawson taking the last wicket in the Wood Cup final v Milnrow.
8. What about off the field?
Celebrating the double in 2006 and walking home to Rochdale in the early hours after throwing up in front of the pavilion. Old Norman Coates drunk in our changing room at Royton. Chris Heywood’s son Matt paying to get in the ground and ended up playing and being fined also at Royton. The infamous ‘ball bearings’ speech by Harold Pickup. The overseas thought he was being serious!
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