BROAD OAK Cricket Club’s Jack Hargreaves is on the top level of Yorkshire Cricket Board’s Pathways to Cricket Excellence scheme this winter, and will be hoping to secure a scholarship from the County club next year.
The 16-year-old all-rounder will again be playing with Broad Oak in the Conference this coming season, after playing his first full year in the first team last summer when he had a top score of 45 and took 12 wickets with his medium pacers.
He will be looking for a bigger return this year, and hoping to remain injury-free – he was out of action for six weeks last summer after a broken arm left him in pot mid-season.
Hargreaves is the only Huddersfield junior on the gold level who train at Headingley Carnegie, although his teammate Charlie Roebuck, former Denby Dale youngster Callum Geldart and Lascelles Hall’s Gurman Randhawa have all been granted scholarships and are likely to be playing some games with the Academy this year.
Skelmanthorpe’s Jamie Jagger is on the Silver Level I Intermediate course, along with Cawthorne’s Liam Wiles, which is also based at Headingley, while Almondbury Wesleyans have two juniors, Mark Floyd and Thomas Oakes, along with Armitage Bridge’s Abdul Wahid on the bronze level, who meet on Saturday mornings at King’s High School.
Alson on bronze level West I is Micklehurst’s Jack Darnborough.
But it is on the West II bronze level where Huddersfield have the most youngsters attending Saturday mornings at Heckmondwike, with no fewer than 10 boys chosen.
They are Tom Barber (Skelmanthorpe), Tom Boorman (Scholes), David Hales (Almondbury Wesleyans), Adil Kaleem (Armitage Bridge), Alex Kemp (Thongsbridge), George Parkes (Skelmanthorpe), Daniel Rushworth (Broad Oak), Michael Smith (Kirkburton), Timothy Taylor (Lascelles Hall), Edward Wilson (Broad Oak).
Meanwhile, three girls from the area have accepted places on the Gold Level Womens’ Centre.
Sarah Ford form Broad Oak is joined by Heather Hales from Almondbury Wesleyans and Cumberworth United’s Chloe Newton-Mann.
DRAX Power are once again providing top competition for Yorkshire schoolchildren with their tournament aimed specifically at Under 9s.
The Drax Cup was launched last year, and aimed at primary schoolchildren, and the first running of the tournament attracted a total of 86 teams with Wheatlands School, from Redcar beating Leeds’ Harehills in the finals at Headingley Carnegie.
St Joseph’s Catholic Primary from Pontefract took third spot ahead of Mount Pleasant C of E from Market Weighton in fourth place.
And this year organisers are hoping to treble the number of schools entering by including a new format of ‘cluster festivals’ where groups of schools will play mini-tournaments instead of playing in a straightforward knockout competition.
The winners of the cluster festivals will then go forward to the next stage, with the finals again being held at Headingley in June.
The chief executive of DRAXPower, Dorothy Thompson, said: “The Cup is an important element of our cricket in the communityinitiative which is proving extremely popular in primary schools.”
Meanwhile, Stewart Regan, chief executive of Yorkshire County Cricket Club, who help to organise the competition in conjunction with the Yorkshire Cricket Board and Yorkshire Schools Cricket Association, added: “Last year’s competition showed how popular the game is across Yorkshire.
“And it also revealed true potential amongst the youngsters enjoying their first experience of cricket.”
Under 9s cricket is played with a softball and uses Kwik Cricket equipment
It is an eight-a-side game with each innings of 16 overs played on a wicket 17 yards long and the boundary set at a maximum of 25 yards.
Schools must be entered in the competition by the end of February, with the first cluster festivals expected to take place after Easter.
For full details and competition rules visit www.yorkshireccc.com/draxcup.