Clubs’ views will shape future of the NCL

Northamptonshire Cricket League clubs will be asked for their input by the new committee
Northamptonshire Cricket League clubs will be asked for their input by the new committee

The new men at the helm of the Northamptonshire Cricket League are looking for clubs to decide the direction the competition takes.

David Hartley from Overstone Park was elected as the new chairman at Wednesday night’s annual meeting and he will have Brigstock’s Robert Pack as his vice-chairman.

They were elected unopposed after John Hodges and Keith Parsons decided to stand down from the respective positions.

The change at the top of the committee means there will also be a change of approach.

And Pack hopes those playing in the competition will grab the opportunity to take the game forward.

“We want playing cricket on a Saturday afternoon to be the most important thing again,” he said.

“The rules and regulations have almost taken over from the game itself and that balance has to be put right.

“And there has to be greater communication between the league and the clubs.

“If they tell us what they want from their sport, we will be able show them how we are working with them to do it.

“If everything is open and transparent then I think this league can become stronger and stronger.”

Hartley, who could not be present at the meeting on Wednesday, expressed his gratitude for the work put in by both those who have gone before him and his vice-chairman.

In a statement read out to the gathered club representatives, he said: “Rob has worked relentlessly and with tremendous endeavour over the past few weeks to ensure the league can move forward with fresh leadership, management and administration.

“Without his efforts I am sure we would not be where we are today.

“Equally the NCL would not be where it is without the 12 years hard work and loyal service of outgoing chairman John Hodges.

“I would also like to express my gratitude to Keith Parsons who has supported me throughout the build-up to this meeting and who, like John, has given many years of loyal service to the league which should not be underestimated or go unrecognised.

“I am aware of the many challenges ahead. Be assured that I am looking forward to putting together a team of people who will work on your behalf to deliver what you asked for at the recent forum (held last week).

“I believe there will be many new initiatives and, by involving representatives from all clubs, as we did in the recent forum, they should therefore reflect the opinion of clubs from all divisions, something Rob and I are very keen to embrace.”

Due to the change in leadership several issues were deferred at the annual meeting and will now be decided upon at an extraordinary general meeting to be held in January.