From the depths of the Northern Premier Cricket League came one of England’s biggest stars. Andrew ‘Freddy’ Flintoff once played for St Anne’s In Lancashire, but their neighbours and rivals believe they themselves are well on their way to finding the next ‘Freddy’.
Fleetwood Cricket Club is currently top of the NPCL, and Vice Chairman Derek Foulkes explains why he is hopeful ‘that such a player will rise up from Fleetwood.’
“Junior cricket is vital part of our club with close to 100 members. The young player of today is tomorrow’s senior star. We have a U11 side plus two U 13’s, one U 15 and a Sunday Colts side.
“We have a number of first team players who are in the present league representative side. Dean Bell also plays for his university side. Our overseas amateur went on to play for Derbyshire.
“We have a senior lady member who plays in both third and second team. Also, Caroline Blundell
represented Lancashire from 2008-2011.”
Fleetwood are keen to make a mark in its community, but Faulkes also recognises the need to utilize the clubs facilities in order to keep the side in existence.
“FCC is very much a community club. We have close links with all the schools in the town. None of them have a cricket pitch so we allow them to use our facilities. Most of our juniors come from that catchment area.
“We are an all year round club. We have squash courts with all year round leagues, very active snooker and dart teams. However our main source of commercial income comes from the hiring out of our function room for private parties.
“Credit must go to our newly formed and very active cricket committee. They encourage the right mix at nets, and help with junior coaching and hold social events that bring parents along. Juniors are also selected for the third and fourth teams. Some on their ability have even progressed to the second team.
“This season in particular there is a real sense of ownership within the senior players that has spread down through the club. The players are more professional, very keen and demonstrate the right attitude. Cricket force weekend was the best attended to date and the results so far this season back all this up.”
On his hopes for the future of Fleetwood Cricket Club, Foulkes concluded: “Keeping the club fresh and vibrant to attract both new and old players is important. To be able to meet the ever increasing financial resources needed to run a successful cricket club.
“To sustain and grow and produce future Freddie’s!”