Catton enjoy first win at their home from home
Milton LindsayOld Catton have enjoyed their first taste of success at their dream home from home. The Norfolk League Division One new boys moved to Postwick this season under a five-year ground-sharing deal with Norwich CC.Milton Lindsay
Old Catton have enjoyed their first taste of success at their dream home from home.
The Norfolk League Division One new boys moved to Postwick this season under a five-year ground-sharing deal with Norwich CC.
But after being frustrated by weather in previous scheduled fixtures, they had to wait until Saturday to complete their first match there - a resounding 76-run success over Rollesby.
Club captain Jon Cooke said that if the club was to realise ambitions of a higher grade of cricket it would require facilities in a similar league as Postwick - a proven Alliance and EAPL standard venue.
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The club was delighted with its new home, but longer term the aim is to improve the facilities at Catton, thereby allowing a return to the village which has been the club's home since 1868.
One of Norfolk's oldest clubs used to be based in the grounds of Catton Hall, which once played host to Victorian cricketing legend WG Grace.
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During the Second World War the Hall was used as a military hospital and the ground was ploughed up for crops.
For over 60 years the club has been based at the parish council-owned Catton Rec ground in Church Street. Cooke's vision is that the facilities there will be upgraded and the team will return there in due course.
'Obviously that is some way off and it's going to take time and a lot of work and money.'
Meanwhile the team will be fully focused on consolidating a position in the top flight.
'Having come up from Division Two we haven't been outplayed by anybody. We are hopeful that we can achieve a mid-table position this season.
'Our second team are top of Division Five and hoping to secure promotion, while our B team are third and going well in Division Seven.'
Experienced all-rounder Andy Franks, who joined the club from Acle last season, was the star of Saturday's show topscoring with 40 in Catton's 171-9 total which also featured 32 from long-serving Paul Prime and a whirlwind cameo 34 from Cooke himself.
Offspinner Franks took the honours with the ball bagging four wickets with Spencer Jackson taking three as Rollesby slumped to 95 all out as Catton secured their second win of the season.
As well as three Saturday teams, two of them based at Catton Rec, Catton also field a Sunday side playing friendlies - which Cooke believes is an ideal platform for developing young talent.
It was an arena which helped young paceman Sam Thelwell along a cricketing path which was to lead to big guns Swardeston and a Minor Counties Championship debut for Norfolk last season.
The club has a pool of around 50 players to call on and Cook is hoping to secure funding to help establish regular youth coaching sessions next season.
t OLD CATTON FACTFILE
President: Mike Lorenz
Chairman: Barry Prime
Secretary: Barry Clemitson.
1st XI captain (Norfolk League Division One): Andy Harris
A XI captain (Norfolk league Division Five): Greg Crisp.
BXI captain (Norfolk League Division Seven): Peter Young.
Sunday captain (Friendly Alliance): Howard Wing.
Club captain: Jon Cooke