Honiton Cricket Club announce ‘all change’ on the field at Mountbatten Park

PUBLISHED: 16:39 01 December 2018 | UPDATED: 09:44 04 December 2018

Picture: Thinkstock

Picture: Thinkstock

DAVID MARIUZ

The recent annual general meeting of Honiton Cricket Club has seen a change of leadership in both the club’s 1st and 2nd XIs.

Off the field all has been well for some time at the club which, for the past six years, has been steered in a forward direction by chairman Andrew Lapping and a hard-working that has managed to keep the club in a stable financial position whilst also overseeing on-ground and club facilities and restarting what is now a vibrant youth section. That off-field progress was matched on the pitch last summer with the 1st XI gaining promotion at the end of last season to match the recent upward trajectory of the 2nd XI.

For 2019, both senior XIs will have new skippers. The 1st XI, who are stepping up into the E Division East with a campaign that begins on Saturday, May 5 with a visit to Woodbury & Newton St Cyres, are to be led by James Pickard, who made the switch midway through last season from Sidmouth CC.

The 2nd XI, who lost the leadership of Andrew Lapping when he stepped down at the end of this year’s campaign having spent the past 17 years captaining club sides!, will be led by Jon Hext.

New 1st XI skipper James Pickard says: “Having played all my cricket for Sidmouth until 2007 when I stopped playing – though I did have one season back in 2014 – it was a hard decision to up roots and play elsewhere. However, since day one I have found this club to be a very special one full fantastic people.”

He continued: “Adam Holmes did a great job last year to take the 1st XI up a division and, while it is of course a shame that he decided to step down, hopefully I can carry on his terrific work and keep things moving onwards and upwards. My passion is to keep people enjoying their cricket, and, if I can make that happen, then there is no reason we can’t go up again. There is a wealth of talent and a great mix of youth and experience at Honiton. I only played 2nd XI last season as I wanted to ease my way into the club, and, while I would not call taking on the 1st XI captaincy in season two at a new club to be ‘easing my way in’, I am truly excited for the challenge and to see where this club can go.”

He concluded: “What is clear is that the club is ever improving it’s player which will undoubtedly help provide competition for places.”

Honiton CC chairman Andrew Lapping said: “Last season we managed to reach our targets for the season, and, in the case of the first team, the set targets were exceeded.

“It’s nice to see that all our efforts getting the club in great shape off the field is starting to spread into the players and performances on the pitch.

“Adam Holmes deserves a special mention for his efforts running the side last season and leading them to their first title about 10 years, it was a difficult year selecting sides, as clubs across many sports seem to find these days, times have changed and people are rarely available for selection for the whole summer, we are very fortunate to have a large squad of players and are grateful to each and everyone of them whether they play one or multiple games, they are valued the same.”

He added: “Having two new and fresh skippers for the senior side’s is a good thing for every player to embrace and look forward too, and I know our lads will back them and work hard for them.”

Honiton Cricket Club are very grateful to the on-going support they have received, and are receiving, from main sponsors MKM Building supplies and also from Combe Estate, Blamphayne Sawmills, Norcott Cider, Devon Tiles, AWP, Axminster MOT Centre, Honiton Golf Club, Porkies The Family Butchers, The Golf Cave, Vale Veterinary Group, RA Johns Carpentry, JC Kitchen Fitting, Simon A Martin Accountants, MNR Mowers, St Johns School Sidmouth and Laps Lawns.

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