Seasoned campaigners take to cricket's world stage

Wharfedale Observer: Martyn Moxon Martyn Moxon

Seventy-four-year-old Horsforth cricketer Dennis Nash will be taking to the world stage next week.

The veteran bowler will be in Arthington’s line up for the 14th Air New Zealand Golden Oldies World Cricket Festival which is being held in North Yorkshire from August 8-15.

Nash, who regularly bowls a 12 over stint for his club on Saturdays and plays Twenty/20 in midweeks,is the oldest local player in an event which has drawn 35 teams from across the globe.

He said: "This is a great idea and I am looking forward to the tournament.There couldn't be a better setting than the grounds of the Nidderdale League clubs."

Arthington wicktkeeper Martin Binks is just a couple of years younger than Nash while another seasoned campaigner is 63-year-old Richard Agar from Otley who will be guesting for Glasshouses.

It is also likely that former Otley cricket captain, Chris Smith, will be playing in a tournament which will see former Test players Bob Holland (Australia), Martyn Moxon (England) and Collis King (West Indies) taking part.

Two Wharfedale clubs who will be playing and staging three games each are Bolton Abbey and Olicanian.

Olicanian, who have been supported by local clubs who have supplied them with players and umpires, play two Australian and one South African side.

On Monday they play Brookfield Brumbies of Australia commencing at 11.30am and follow that on Wednesday with a fixture against Willows of South Africa (11am).

Their final fixture is on Friday against Hawesbury HOC’s of Australia (11am).

Olicanian chairman David House said: “We are very proud to have been selected to act as a host ground and being offered the opportunity to enter a team.

“This is a great opportunity for Ilkley and Olicanian Cricket Club in particular to show what we can offer by way of hospitality to our overseas visitors.

“We would welcome anyone to the ground during and after the matches to meet our visitors for a drink and barbecue which will take place after the games.

“The standard of cricket should be good with the teams we have been able to put together and the visiting teams will include players with first class experience.”

Bolton Abbey will play three 40 overs contests against Australian sides. They face Kookaburra on Monday (11.30am), Australia/Sri Lanka Silver CC on Wednesday (11am) and Springwood on Friday (11.30am), Bolton Abbey scorer John Heap said: “We are all looking forward to it very much and we hope visitors will come to our ground and enjoy the wonderful surroundings.”

The tournament starts in Masham on Sunday with an opening ceremony and parade of nations at 5.15pm.

There are a number of former state and provincial players taking part including Rodney Gray, turning out for the South African Willows, Queensland’s Mark Gaskell, former Yorkshire wicketkeeper Richard Blakey, ex Leeward Islands player Harwood Williams, Derbyshire’s Paul Aldred, Queensland’s Sandy Morgan as well as South Africans Mike Huddy and Dave Edwards.

In all, over 800 cricketers will be turning out to play on some of the most wonderful grounds in villages around Yorkshire, all of them with the support of the clubs from the Nidderdale Cricket League. Admission to all games is free.

Matches are being played at: Alne, Arthington, Beckwithshaw, Bilton, Bishop Monkton, Bolton Abbey, Burton Leonard, DacreBanks, Glasshouses, Goldsbrough, Helperby, Killinghall, Knaresborough, Lofthouse, Masham, Newby Hall, North Stainley, Olicanians, Ouseburn, Pannal, Pateley Brdige, Raskelf, Ripley, Sessay, Spofforth, Studley Royal, Thornton Watlass, Walton and West Tanfield.

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