Meeting 23rd June

Prior to the meeting President Greg made two cheque presentations to Robert Norton of Borrowbrook Home Link for £1,000 and also to Melanie Howard of NORSACA, which is an Autism charity serving both Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire, for £834

Speaker: We welcomed Alan Davies who spoke about his time as a cricket umpire.

Alan was born in Little Eaton and played his first game of cricket at the age of 5. His first senior game was a few years later at Quarndon when he faced at that time the quickest bowler he had ever seen. Yes it was frightening but he was hooked from then on.

He played for Little Eaton for many years before representing the Army in Cyprus where the pitches were rock hard. Upon his return to the area Alan played for several local clubs before playing for Swarkstone where he now looks after the ground.

When asked to umpire a local game it became apparent that he was not certain of all the many rules of cricket and he then decided to go onto an umpires course at St Helen's House in Derby. When qualified he had 2 years umpiring at Swarkstone, 9 years in the Derby county league before moving onto the Derbyshire Premier league.
Alan then spent 9 years umpiring the Derbyshire County Cricket Club second eleven's matches where he met many personalities. These included a seventeen year old Andrew Flintoff and he also stood with Mervin Kitchen, Ken Palmer and David Shepherd who are recognized throughout the world as top umpires.
We heard several amusing stories about F S Trueman (Freddy), Brian Statham, Viv Richard and Wes Hall along with umpires Dickie Bird, Arthur Jepson, Alex Skelton and wicket keeper Hopper Levett.
Alan gave his thoughts and opinions on the modern game and spoke about the Twenty 20, current number of test matches played, money in the game and Sky TV.

In summary he said local cricket is currently healthy and very strong.

Vote of thanks: This was given by Neil Hall who said we all enjoyed the stories tonight and what an achievement it is to teach an American to become a Cricket umpire. It had also been a pleasure to watch him umpiring over the years and without guys like you we couldn't have local cricket.

16th June 2014


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