Stayley Cricket Club aim to Lord it in national competition

EXCITEMENT is building as a Stalybridge cricket club stands just two wins from playing at the home of the sport in a national competition.

Stayley has already seen the uplift brought by its progress to the quarter finals of the Voneus Village Cup.

Weather permitting, the Millbrook-based club will be heading up the M6 to take on Westmorland League side Shireshead and Forton in the last eight on Sunday, July 16.

Win that and they are meant to be on the road again for the semi-finals – but the prospect of playing at Lord’s is already at the back of people’s minds.

Lance Bromley chatting to Gary Carter from The Correspondent

And captain Andy Gleave’s insistence of adding the final date, Sunday, September 3, to the fixture calendar may seem mystic.

He said: “In the dressing room, we’ve probably not thought about Lord’s. Realistically, though, we probably have.

“When we won the area final, it seemed a while away but now we’re two wins from playing at the home of cricket, I’d be lying if I said a few of us hadn’t thought about it.

“We identified reaching the area final, which we lost last year, and for the last two games the lads have been superb – hopefully we can carry that on.

Lance Bromley and Andy Gleave

“Our Village Cup results have coincided with an upturn of our league form. Players have really kicked on and the cup is an opportunity for the lads to perform.

“This run has been absolutely massive. The last game was absolutely packed and you could feel a buzz around the club.

“Because we’re playing teams from out of the area, to a certain extent games are a journey into the unknown but we’re managing to get video footage, as I’m sure they’ll have of us.

“Reaching Lords will be unreal for what it does for the club and the community. It would blow your mind.

“But we can’t think too far ahead.”

Stayley Cricket Club

To reach the semi-finals, Stayley – who play in the Greater Manchester Cricket League Division One – defeated Hull-based Patrington by 106 runs in front of a crowd estimated to be 500-600 people at their tight Oxford Street ground.

After heading to Wakefield-based Ackworth, where they won by 95 runs, they have made new friends in different parts of the country.

So much so, their opponents have already signalled their intention to hold pre-season friendlies.

And chairman Lance Bromley, who saw the run start on the Cheshire and Clwyd group – in which they saw off Birch Vale and Thornsett, Halkyn, Hawk Green and Alvanley, believes this is pushing the team and the club on.

Andy Gleave chatting to The Correspondent

He said as bowler Wasim Qasim’s 11 put him one off the top of the list of leading wicket takers in the competition: “Exposure-wise, it’s been fantastic as we’re getting g teams from out of the area coming to us and we’re travelling to sides we wouldn’t normally face.

“The feedback has been fantastic and in the last round, we had a fantastic turnout of locals and supporters.

“The away team brought a coachload of fans and everything they said was positive, they’ve invited us over for a friendly – there’ll be 30 or 40 of us going up for the next game.

“But I’ve not dared to look as far forward as Lord’s yet, it’s a case of taking each game as it comes but with the team we’ve got and the run we’re on, anything is possible.

“We don’t want the cup run to overtake the league as that’s our priority but a trip to Lord’s is on the cards if we can get these next two games won.

“And there’s a buzz around the club. It’s the closest we’ve been to a major final for a long time and you can’t not think about it – it’s also my birthday that weekend.”

One Reply to “Stayley Cricket Club aim to Lord it in national competition”

  1. Great to see Stayley doing well.Having been there umpire in all the games so far I am now barred from standing in there games.However I will be with them as long as they are in the competition as a supporter.If they play as well as they can nothing is impossible..All the best Gleavy lad see you on Sunday

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