Bleak Hill Primary win Lancs ASDA Kwik Cricket Final
Bleak Hill Primary from St Helens crowned winners of the Lancashire ASDA Kwik Cricket Final.
This year's Lancashire Asda Kwik Cricket Final took place at The Northern Club in Sefton. The following schools make it to the Northern Final:
- Winners: Bleak Hill Primary from St Helens with 1103 runs
- Runners Up: King David Primary from Liverpool with 1019 runs
- Third: St Luke's Primary Bury with 1004 runs
- Orrell St James Primary from Wigan with 972 runs
Due to heavy rain after the quater finals, play was suspended for the rest of the day and final positions were decided on total run rate on the day.
Good luck to the four schools representing Lancashire in the North Regional Finals at Warrington Sports Club on Tuesday 10 July and thanks to The Northern Club for hosting.
Report below from the day written by Paul Edwards and Images by Andrew Laycock.
It takes a mighty effort to fill the broad expanses of Northern CC with sportspeople, but last Thursday's ASDA Kwik Cricket County Final managed it. Wherever one looked at around eleven o'clock there were matches taking place, and many of them were of a remarkably high standard. When the event organiser Shaun Anders commented that "the quality of play has been an eye-opener," he was speaking not just for himself, but also for the many LCB staff on duty at Crosby.
Teams from 32 primary schools across Lancashire attended the event, and in mid-morning 16 matches were taking place, all of them efficiently umpired either by Lancashire staff or by volunteers from that academy of cricketing studies, Myerscough College.
At the hub of the operation, Bobby Denning sat in the most centrally placed of Moor Park's pavilions, collating all the statistics and making a series of announcements. It was, to all intents and purposes, the summer game's answer to the Election Night studio, with Denning superbly cast in the David Dimbleby role. Results were received from matches involving schools as far afield as Rishton Methodist, Waddington and West Bradford Primary, and Alexander Park; there was even a recount in one game. All we needed was Andy Hayhurst on the swingometer.
Elections, however, are not interrupted by rain whereas cricketers regard the weather as an occupational hazard. The torrential though very localised downpour that drenched Crosby just after lunch made certain that no further play would be possible. By that stage, though, four schools had won their places in the semi-finals, and had thereby qualified for Friday's regional finals at Warrington. They were: Bleak Hill Primary, St Helens; Orrell St James' Catholic Primary School; King David Primary School, Liverpool; and St Luke's Primary School, Bury.
The winners of the ASDA County Final had to be decided by run rate, and Bleak Hill's 1103 ensured that they carried off the cup, which was presented by Lancashire's Director of Cricket, Mike Watkinson, who spoke briefly and passionately about the importance of events like the Kwik Cricket Final. "I'm very keen on cricket in Lancashire developing at all levels and there's been some good talent on show today," he said. "This is the starting place for it all."
After the presentation of trophies and medals Bleak Hill Primary's coach Andrew Harrison said that cricket was a very important sport at the school. "The team includes about six district players who represent St Helens, so we have quite a strong core," he said. "The district cricket coach Chris Chambers comes in and delivers sessions, so our players are trained and the game is just a massive part of we do at Bleak Hill.
"Cricket is the number one sport for these players and they have the potential to go all the way. I try and coach them once a day leading up to events like this but Chris Chambers does a six-week programme two or three times a year. Some of that coaching begins in October and there is a lot of competition to get into the side.
"The Lancashire Cricket Board works very hard to get tournaments like this up and running," he added. "It's all very good having the coaching but schools are limited in what they can organise. Having a pathway to the national finals delivered by the LCB benefits the school enormously and we also have very good links with Rainford CC, which is where many of our players receive further coaching."