May 012014

CROSSSYa0001BY STEVE McHUGH: HEYWOOD’S progress as a well-regarded cricket club in the county has been reflected in one of their top players and administrators being appointed as one of the directors of the Lancashire Cricket Board.

Bobby Cross, 31-year-old record run scorer at Crimble, becomes the youngest member of the Board of Directors following the recent annual meeting.

He is one of two new faces in a revamped Board set-up alongside Mike Watkinson, the 53-year-old former England all-rounder who is currently also Cricket Director with Lancashire Cricket Club itself.

They join chairman Bob Hinchcliffe, the well-known Prestwich administrator, treasurer Bill Robinson (Fylde), Geoff Ogden (Worsley) and Ken Standring (Southport).

And Cross believes that his selection reflects well on the progress that Heywood have been making on and particularly off the field in recent years.

“It was out-of-the blue to be asked and I regard it as an honour not just for myself but recognition for Heywood as a club, both at senior and junior level,” said Cross.

“It was a source of great pride to wear the Red Rose as a player at various levels, and to step into this new role at such an exciting and challenging time for cricket in the county is something I am very much looking forward to.

“I have already worked closely with the LCB staff in relation to club matters and with my involvement coaching on the county junior programme. Now this will allow me to get more involved helping to take the game forward at various levels in the county.”

Heywood have certainly become noticed at Old Trafford in recent years, during which time they have successfully staged several matches at junior and second eleven level.

One of the club’s biggest off-the-field hits was their inaugural NatWest CricketForce day in 2012, when Cross was one of the prime motivators behind the scenes.

The ground and its facilities have also been upgraded in the past few years, with Cross and other Heywood officials working hard to obtain grants for the upgrading of the pavilion’s façade plus new cricket nets and artificial pitches.

Of interest to Cross and the other directors will be ongoing Engagement Meetings involving leagues in the Greater Manchester catchment area.

It is no secret that there is strong debate in the region about the future structure of club cricket, and that some leagues have shown interest in discussing possible options, including potential for mergers and increased co-operation.

Added Cross: “The fact that the LCB has the leagues sat around the table engaged in healthy discussion must be taken as a positive sign for the future of the local game.”

That may have an impact on how the CLL goes forward. They originally voted for a two-year trial of two divisions, but whether that carries on may hinge on what is discussed at the LCB meeting.

The CLL have invited applications for new member clubs, with the possibility of two expanded divisions, but the picture could change if discussions on mergers with other leagues are taken a step forward following the Board’s involvement.

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 May 1, 2014  Tagged with: ,  Add comments

  3 Responses to “Cross Appointed LCB Director”

  1. Good effort Bobby. Now, help shape Lancs cricket into something we can all enjoy, rather than the parochial preservation of self-interest it seems to be at the moment (CLL and Lancs League especially)

  2. Bobby, your rewards are richly deserved. I speak for all at Ashton in congratulating you on your appointment. In fact the world of league cricket will no doubt share your joy, in the knowledge that the LCB has among them someone who is currently in touch with cricket at this level, who has, and continues to be a great model for the game, and can also play a bit. If you can impart your knowledge and enthusiasm on the rest of the county, then we will all benefit massively. We all know that league cricket is in a state of flux, and some level heads are needed to guide the relative authorities through what for many clubs, is going to be a critical period. The problems at Heywood some years ago, and the progress you have made since those dark days, are testament to the powers and determination of such resolute people, who have turned the club in to the envy of many, and an inspiration to all. I echo scoops sentiments, it is time that the game of cricket was put first, rather than the wrangling and oneupmanship that has prevailed recently. Well done Bobby and good luck to you, all at Heywood, and to all involved in league cricket, may you and your clubs thrive and prosper.
    Stan Adshead.

  3. A great testament to the club, the town but above all to the man.

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