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AndyE
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Oct 17, 2014, 12:04 AM

Posts: 2259
Location: Rochester
Team(s): Chatham Town

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League Cricket Tables Can't Post or Reply Privately

As most readers of this forum will know, there are several places on the Internet which carry archive football league tables. Indeed, this very website is one of them.

League cricket is less well served. Even in 2014 there are important leagues which don't have a website at all (yes, North Lancs and Cumbria, I'm looking at you!), one has two websites which are not on speaking terms and which sometimes carry conflicting information, and very few have their league tables pre the play-cricket era readily available.

So I've tried to collect as many league tables as I could, and I've made a big spreadsheet of them. It's woefully short of being complete and some of what's on there is probably wrong, but it's a start and there may be a few people here who'd like to see it.

If so, you'll find it at:

http://www.andyofkent.exofire.net/league_cricket_xl.xls


PaulC
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Oct 20, 2014, 3:00 PM

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An excellent resource.

The Northern League website has a very good archive with League tables, batting/bowling averages etc dating back to its formation in 1952.


AndyE
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Oct 25, 2014, 10:14 PM

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Thanks Paul.

As well as the Northern League, the Liverpool and District Competition and the Middlesex County League have tables from inception on their websites. Lancashire League tables from inception are easy to find as well since they appeared in Wisden well before it covered any other leagues, but some others are less easy to come by.


Richard Rundle
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Oct 26, 2014, 12:23 PM

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The North Devon League website also has, I believe, full tables since inception. This league is mostly (but not completely) played on Sundays with many clubs in the upper echelons being Devon League clubs as well.


cope1
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Oct 26, 2014, 4:15 PM

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Excellent work!

The Herts League website has an archive for the league in its current guise. I'd like to see tables for the Grasshopper and Herts County Leagues that merged to form it (I barely remember this happening, reported in the local paper when I was about 12).


(This post was edited by cope1 on Oct 26, 2014, 4:16 PM)


AndyE
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Oct 27, 2014, 11:00 PM

Posts: 2259
Location: Rochester
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Hertfordshire was where I spent my cricketing life before switching to Kent in 2006. The Kent League is more fun; the Hertfordshire clubs take it all far too seriously and there are too many rules.

The two leagues were the Hertfordshire League (variously sponsored by Truman, Grasshopper, and Bryan) and the Hertfordshire Competition. The Competition started in 1968, and the League started in 1974 when the leading clubs broke away from the Competition. The re-amalgamation was agreed after the end of the 1993 season, and that's when the archive on the website begins.

Older Herts League tables could probably be found if one looked hard enough - the League published a handbook, and the tables appeared in local press. Competition tables might be harder to find, because they were always rather sporadic even during the season.


AndyE
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Apr 5, 2015, 5:29 PM

Posts: 2259
Location: Rochester
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I've updated the league cricket spreadsheet for the start of the 2015 season. Promotions and relegations which are not as the 2014 league tables would lead you to expect are now identified, and there's been a restructuring in South Wales from 1:2 at the top two levels to 1:1:2. West of England will move the other way after the 2015 season, from 1:1:2:4 to 1:2:4.

Hertfordshire becomes an ECB Premier League in its own right in 2015. A new Premier League in Greater Manchester is scheduled to start in 2016, although not everyone is in favour, but if it happens it will reduce the number of "Step 1" leagues in Lancashire from ten to six (still three too many, but it's a start).

Big changes in Yorkshire planned for 2016 too, and in this case there are few seriously opposed. The current Yorkshire League will disappear, to be replaced by a Yorkshire League North and a Yorkshire League South. The Bradford League is also seeking Premier League status - in effect it will be Yorkshire League West, although it won't be called that - and the current eight "Step 1" leagues will reduce to five or six. (Huddersfield has chosen to remain independent, which will cause the league to become rubbish within a few years. As far as I can tell, Aire/Wharfe hasn't yet decided whether or not to become a feeder to Bradford.)

Dorset is still several years away from the Premier League status that it says it wants, and North Lancashire and Cumbria still doesn't even have a website. The spreadsheet can still be found at:

http://www.andyofkent.exofire.net/league_cricket_xl.xls


AndyE
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Mar 18, 2016, 3:10 PM

Posts: 2259
Location: Rochester
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It's that time of year again, and a new version of the League Cricket Spreadsheet has been published today.

Outside Lancashire and Yorkshire, not a great deal has changed since last year. As anticipated, West of England has restructured from 1:1:2:4 to 1:2:4, but everything else is as you were. I'm expecting a restructuring in Kent within a couple of years, but no concrete proposal yet.

Big chances in the Roses counties though. To take Lancashire first, the ten "Step 1" leagues are now down to eight. The Bolton and District Association has effectively merged with the Bolton League; for 2016 there will be one division of 21 clubs, with a split to two divisions anticipated next year. The Central Lancashire and Saddleworth leagues have merged and are now called the Pennine League.

The new Greater Manchester League begins this year, as a result of which the Lancashire County League has ceased to exist since all of its clubs have joined the new league. Greater Manchester is said to be seeking ECB Premier status for 2017.

Discussions aimed at creating a pyramid out of the Lancashire, Northern, Palace Shield, and Ribblesdale leagues have stalled. As far as I can tell, the East Lancs clubs of the Lancashire and Ribblesdale Leagues aren't keen on travelling to the Fylde coast or to Cumbria, while the Cumbrian clubs are uncertain as whether they have a future in a Lancashire setup. The Liverpool and District Competition is unchanged, and still has two websites which are not on speaking teams.

Yorkshire's changes have gone more or less to plan. The Yorkshire League is no more; its clubs have been dispersed to two new ECB Premier Leagues Yorkshire North and Yorkshire South. The York and District League is to be a feeder to North, while the South Yorkshire League will be a feeder to South. The North Yorkshire and South Durham League is unchanged, while the Bradford League has expanded its footprint by merging with the Central Yorkshire League and is considered parallel to the these three. It had hoped to secure ECB Premier status this year, but we now hear that this should happen for 2017.

So eight "Step 1" leagues in Yorkshire are down to six. The Aire/Wharfe and Huddersfield Leagues continue to stand alone, but I'd expect both of them to join the Bradford pyramid in the fullness of time.

Three "Cinderella" counties continue not to be served by the ECB Premier system. That's never going to change in Bedfordshire, while the Dorset League is said to be keen on ECB Premier status but it is not imminent. What happens in Cumbria probably depends on what eventually happens in the top half of Lancashire, but at least the North Lancs and Cumbria League (which no longer has any Lancashire clubs in membership) finally has a website!

There are two versions of the League Cricket Spreadsheet.
For the MS Excel version, go to: here
For the LibreOffice version (considerably smaller file size), go to: here


Feversham Lens
First Team Star


Mar 18, 2016, 7:08 PM

Posts: 2885
Location: York
Team(s): Not any more

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What happens in Cumbria probably depends on what eventually happens in the top half of Lancashire, but at least the North Lancs and Cumbria League (which no longer has any Lancashire clubs in membership) finally has a website!

Plenty of people born and bred in the South Lakes coastal strip still regard themselves as Lancastrians, despite 'Lancashire North of the Sands' having been 'lost' to Cumbria way back in 1974. This parochialism cuts two ways. I recall a Whitehaven native telling me: "Barrovians will never be Cumbrians as long as they've got holes in their arses."

Out of interest, as a relative newcomer to cricket spectating, how do you define a senior league? I note the Halifax League, covering an area in which I grew up, is missing from the Yorkshire section. Why doesn't it qualify?



For sporting (and other) images, visit https://www.flickr.com/photos/feversham/

Ground/venue totals: Football 900; Rugby Union 264; Rugby League 214; Cricket 125; Speedway 53; Stock Cars 25; Grasstrack 15; Ice Hockey 15; Cycle Speedway 4; Greyhounds 2.

(This post was edited by Feversham Lens on Mar 18, 2016, 7:10 PM)


AndyE
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Mar 18, 2016, 10:22 PM

Posts: 2259
Location: Rochester
Team(s): Chatham Town

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In Lancashire, the Lancashire Cricket Board itself designated the twelve senior leagues in the county a few years back. They were the ten which existed as of last season, the Manchester and District League (defunct 2013, clubs divided between Bolton and District and Saddleworth), and the Isle of Man League. The last named clearly isn't really in Lancashire, but it does have the right to enter a club into the LCB Cup.

The Yorkshire Cricket Board has never made a formal designation in the same way, but the consensus seems to be that the cricket in the Halifax League isn't of as high a standard as in Bradford, Central Yorkshire, or Huddersfield. I haven't seen cricket in any of those leagues, but note for instance the performance of Halifax League clubs against clubs from those other leagues in the Heavy Woollen Cup. There are no professionals in the Halifax League, and good players have tended to migrate to Bradford League clubs. But for sure, the Halifax League would probably be "next in line" in Yorkshire to be considered as a "Step 1 league".

The Bradford League did originally state that its pyramid plans were to include the Halifax League, but that's gone rather quiet. Whether that's because Halifax weren't interested, as Huddersfield weren't, I don't know.


Feversham Lens
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Mar 19, 2016, 7:49 AM

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Location: York
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Thanks for the explanation, Andy. Entirely logical! The stronger clubs in Calderdale (i.e. the Halifax district) tend not to play in the Halifax League. For example, Barkisland and Elland are in the Huddersfield, Lightcliffe in the Bradford and Todmorden in the Lancashire. I watched a fair bit of Bradford League cricket last season, and got to know an official at one of its leading clubs. I recall, when news of the Bradford-Central Yorkshire merger broke, him saying the Halifax League was expected to become a feeder.



For sporting (and other) images, visit https://www.flickr.com/photos/feversham/

Ground/venue totals: Football 900; Rugby Union 264; Rugby League 214; Cricket 125; Speedway 53; Stock Cars 25; Grasstrack 15; Ice Hockey 15; Cycle Speedway 4; Greyhounds 2.

(This post was edited by Feversham Lens on Mar 19, 2016, 7:57 AM)


AndyE
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Mar 20, 2016, 12:02 AM

Posts: 2259
Location: Rochester
Team(s): Chatham Town

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I think you hit the nail of the head by noting that the best teams in Calderdale play in leagues other than the Halifax League.

Mind you, if Lancashire thought that way then we could downgrade several of its designated senior leagues. The Bolton and District, Ribblesdale, and Saddleworth Leagues had essentially the same footprints as the Bolton, Lancashire, and Central Lancashire leagues respectively. There was no relegation or promotion, but the first group of three were always seen as second best to the second group of three. Similarly, the Palace Shield overlaps a bit with the Liverpool and District footprint in the Southport area and the Northern footprint in the Preston area, but is not as strong as either.

A couple of the ECB Premier Leagues don't really deserve that status either, and the best teams in their areas play in other leagues. Cleethorpes play in Yorkshire Premier South and Bracebridge Heath (from Lincoln) used to play in Nottinghamshire Premier. They're not at Premier level, but Lea and Roses CC (from Gainsborough) still play in the Nottinghamshire pyramid. The Lincolnshire Premier just isn't all that good, and two of the regular Premier clubs - Bourne and Market Deeping - draw quite a few of their players from Peterborough in any case. (If you want to play cricket in Peterborough, you'd better be happy with lots of travelling. There are Peterborough-area clubs in the East Anglian, Lincolnshire, and Northamptonshire pyramids.)

I've not seen it for myself, but one of my friends at a Kent Premier club saw a couple of North Wales Premier games while on holiday. Most of the players wouldn't get into his club's 2nd XI, I was told, and the strongest clubs in North Wales (currently Colwyn Bay and Prestatyn) play in the Liverpool and District pyramid.

Leicestershire and Northamptonshire probably ought to merge their top divisions - below the top four in each case, the standard has been reported to me as "second tier at best". Mind you, in just about every league you'll hear old gits like me say that the standard is nothing like as good as it was in the 90s, and in the 90s you heard people from the 60s say the same.


PaulC
Man City Transfer Target!


Mar 21, 2016, 8:39 AM

Posts: 10605
Location: Ayrshire, Midlothian
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Discussions aimed at creating a pyramid out of the Lancashire, Northern, Palace Shield, and Ribblesdale leagues have stalled. As far as I can tell, the East Lancs clubs of the Lancashire and Ribblesdale Leagues aren't keen on travelling to the Fylde coast or to Cumbria, while the Cumbrian clubs are uncertain as whether they have a future in a Lancashire setup.


The Lancashire League has scuppered the plans for the moment.

A recent LL meeting voted 8-6 in favour of admitting 10 new clubs - but the motion failed because a 2/3 majority was needed. 8 NL clubs and 2 RL clubs were to be added but some clubs were unhappy having to travel all the way to Fylde(!!!!) to visit Blackpool, St Annes and Fleetwood.

The LL is the most conservative of leagues and wants any expansion to be on its own terms. The latest indication is they might try again with Darwen, Chorley and Leyland from the NL, Clitheroe and Gt Harwood from the RL and adjacent teams from the new Pennine League.


AndyE
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Mar 22, 2016, 11:50 AM

Posts: 2259
Location: Rochester
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Thanks Paul.

If the East Lancs clubs don't want to go all the way to Blackpool, I can only imagine that they haven't actually noticed the presence of Barrow and Penrith in the Northern League yet!

It's a few years since I've seen a Lancashire League game, but my impression is that the standard there isn't special at the moment. The ever-increasing amount of international cricket means that the foreign pros aren't the big names they once were, while the better English players have moved to leagues where they're allowed to get paid.

I'd have thought the most viable plan for the moment would be some kind of merger with the Ribblesdale League, along the same lines as the merger further south which has created the Pennine League.


Feversham Lens
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Mar 22, 2016, 12:41 PM

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If the East Lancs clubs don't want to go all the way to Blackpool, I can only imagine that they haven't actually noticed the presence of Barrow and Penrith in the Northern League yet!

It's a few years since I've seen a Lancashire League game, but my impression is that the standard there isn't special at the moment. The ever-increasing amount of international cricket means that the foreign pros aren't the big names they once were, while the better English players have moved to leagues where they're allowed to get paid.

I watched quite a few Lancashire League games last summer. Everywhere I went, I was told playing standards and crowds aren't a patch on ten, twenty, thirty years ago. One of the Lancashire clubs I visited was Darwen. A club official told me Darwen are desperate to get out of the Northern League, because of the travelling. They'd much rather be in the Lancashire League, he said, playing local rivals in the Accrington-Blackburn-Burnley district.



For sporting (and other) images, visit https://www.flickr.com/photos/feversham/

Ground/venue totals: Football 900; Rugby Union 264; Rugby League 214; Cricket 125; Speedway 53; Stock Cars 25; Grasstrack 15; Ice Hockey 15; Cycle Speedway 4; Greyhounds 2.

(This post was edited by Feversham Lens on Mar 22, 2016, 12:42 PM)


AndyE
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Mar 22, 2016, 3:04 PM

Posts: 2259
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Team(s): Chatham Town

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I could certainly see Darwen, and maybe also Chorley and Leyland as Paul suggests, preferring to play in the Lancashire League for geographical reasons. In theory perhaps Preston too, but it's a long time since they've been much good and the Lancashire League wouldn't be desperate to have them.

If those clubs did move east of their own accord, where would that leave the rest of the Northern League? Not viable on its own, I suspect. I suppose the three Fylde teams could look to the Liverpool and District which does already have one Fylde team (Lytham), but they wouldn't be all that keen on a possible trip to Colwyn Bay on a Saturday in August.

The four Cumbrian clubs could go to (in two cases, go back to) North Lancashire and Cumbria. That league would then include all of Cumbria's strongest teams, and there's no reason why it couldn't then reinvent itself as the Cumbria Premier League. Lancaster and Morecambe would then be left without anything very attractive available to them.


PaulC
Man City Transfer Target!


Jun 26, 2016, 10:37 PM

Posts: 10605
Location: Ayrshire, Midlothian
Team(s): AFC Darwen, Troon, Ayr Utd, Burnley

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An update hot off the press.

Yesterday Darwen announced they had resigned from the Northern League and have been accepted by the Lancashire League.

Clitheroe have now followed suit, resigning from the Ribblesdale League. Great Harwood from the RBL have also been invited to join.

The League will have 17 clubs and it says it's the first step towards a promotion/relegation structure.


(This post was edited by PaulC on Jun 26, 2016, 10:38 PM)


AndyE
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Jun 27, 2016, 1:23 PM

Posts: 2259
Location: Rochester
Team(s): Chatham Town

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Seventeen is an awkward number for a league to have, since one club will have a blank day every week. Is the acceptance of three new clubs, rather than the more logical two, based on an assumption that Colne - reported to be in serious financial difficulties - might pack up at the end of the season?

If it's sixteen clubs, they might attempt a 30 game season. But if it's seventeen, they'll probably have to do something complicated with a split at the end of July - a 32 game season which would need 34 playing dates doesn't sound feasible.


PaulC
Man City Transfer Target!


Jun 27, 2016, 1:30 PM

Posts: 10605
Location: Ayrshire, Midlothian
Team(s): AFC Darwen, Troon, Ayr Utd, Burnley

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Seventeen is an awkward number for a league to have, since one club will have a blank day every week. Is the acceptance of three new clubs, rather than the more logical two, based on an assumption that Colne - reported to be in serious financial difficulties - might pack up at the end of the season?

If it's sixteen clubs, they might attempt a 30 game season. But if it's seventeen, they'll probably have to do something complicated with a split at the end of July - a 32 game season which would need 34 playing dates doesn't sound feasible.


I wasn't aware of the problems at Colne. If they had tried to have an unwieldy number of clubs 17 would be a great start.

I don't see how they could have a 32/34 match season. I'd been thinking about it myself. Two conferences of 8 and 9 - play home and away in own conference and one match against each team in other conference: that would give a 23 or 24 match season followed by a semi-final and final for the top two in each conference.

All a bit too revolutionary for the LL perhaps.


AndyE
First Team Star

Jun 27, 2016, 3:52 PM

Posts: 2259
Location: Rochester
Team(s): Chatham Town

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Re: [PaulC] League Cricket Tables/lancs league reorgsnisation [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

I suppose the most likely would be to copy the Ribblesdale League format. The teams would play each other once, and then split into a Top Nine and a Bottom Eight. The teams in each half would then play each other once more, with venues reversed from the first part of the season. The Top Nine would thus play a 24 game season over the same 26 playing days as now.

What the Northern League will do about losing one of its stronger clubs and falling down to twelve remains to be seen. Its preferred number is fourteen, but it hasn't been there since 2006.


PaulC
Man City Transfer Target!


Jun 27, 2016, 4:18 PM

Posts: 10605
Location: Ayrshire, Midlothian
Team(s): AFC Darwen, Troon, Ayr Utd, Burnley

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I suppose the most likely would be to copy the Ribblesdale League format. The teams would play each other once, and then split into a Top Nine and a Bottom Eight. The teams in each half would then play each other once more, with venues reversed from the first part of the season. The Top Nine would thus play a 24 game season over the same 26 playing days as now.

What the Northern League will do about losing one of its stronger clubs and falling down to twelve remains to be seen. Its preferred number is fourteen, but it hasn't been there since 2006.


OK that format would sense. I hadnt realised that's what goes in the Ribblesdale ... I had realised there was a large number of clubs in the Senior division though.

Initially it was suggest Leyland and Chorley would also join the LL, and that makes sense, given their location but the LL site http://lancashireleague.com/Articles/15/15165.html

says

"We have been working with the LCB and other leagues over the past 18 months in an effort to develop structures in league cricket which benefit all clubs in the area and hope to continue the positive discussions between leagues which have been helpfully facilitated by the LCB and ECB . The original expansion plan proposed by the league did not suit everyone and was voted against by our member clubs. It was never the intention of the league to reduce a League to a number of clubs which makes the league no longer viable."

That might have made them back off reducing the NL to 10. It looks as if there is still some hope of a broader pyramid.

Perhaps, the NL clubs which broke away from the RL in the early 50s will merge back with them. In all my days watching Darwen the NL was a static 12 team league - I think, from formation, only Furness left and someone joined - Leyland Motors perhaps.


AndyE
First Team Star

Oct 29, 2016, 11:47 PM

Posts: 2259
Location: Rochester
Team(s): Chatham Town

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Re: [PaulC] League Cricket Tables/lancs league reorgsnisation [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

It must be the latest finish ever, but the 2016 league cricket season is now over. It ended on Thursday with the Yorkshire Premier Championship final in Abu Dhabi (that'll be the Abu Dhabi just outside Mexborough ...)

Actually, that very event brings two questions to mind:
1. Is it a good idea to play this final in Abu Dhabi instead of at, say, Headingley? There were basically no spectators present, and you'd surely get a few hundred if it were held in Yorkshire. Sure, there are logistical issues around the idea of a late September final in Yorkshire, but is playing it in Abu Dhabi really any better than playing the Champions League final in New York?

2. The first all-Yorkshire champions are Wakefield Thornes CC. They are not a club which has traditionally played at the higher levels, and even before the restructuring of Yorkshire cricket they'd only been in the top division of the Central Yorkshire League for a few years. Will their success prove to be a flash in the pan resulting from, for now, a big budget (qua more football clubs than we care to name), or have they actually "always" been a big club who had until now suffered from the closed shop that was the Yorkshire League?

But the actual reason for coming here was to announce a new edition of the League Cricket Spreadsheet, updated to the end of the 2016 season. I have complete information on the 2016 season but there are still plenty of gaps in previous years, so please get in touch if you're able to fill any of them.

For the MS Excel version (1.81 mB) go to: here
For the LibreOffice version (736 kB) go to: here


PaulC
Man City Transfer Target!


Oct 30, 2016, 8:30 AM

Posts: 10605
Location: Ayrshire, Midlothian
Team(s): AFC Darwen, Troon, Ayr Utd, Burnley

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But the actual reason for coming here was to announce a new edition of the League Cricket Spreadsheet, updated to the end of the 2016 season. I have complete information on the 2016 season but there are still plenty of gaps in previous years, so please get in touch if you're able to fill any of them.

For the MS Excel version (1.81 mB) go to: here
For the LibreOffice version (736 kB) go to: here


Excellent! Thanks.


GrundyHiller
First Team Sub


Nov 4, 2016, 11:39 AM

Posts: 1140
Location: Lancashire
Team(s): Horwich RMI, Bolton Wanderers

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The North Lancashire and Cumbria League finally went on Play Cricket in 2016. As part of that process Cumberland CCC stalwart Gilbert Johnstone has been compiling an archive of tables, averages etc that he has done back to 1956. They take some finding on the site but the results of Gilbert's excellent work can be accessed here:
http://nlccl.play-cricket.com/website/web_pages/215516


AndyE
First Team Star

Nov 13, 2016, 3:10 PM

Posts: 2259
Location: Rochester
Team(s): Chatham Town

Post #25 of 44 (11705 views)
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Good work by Mr Johnstone! Thanks for that, GrundyHiller; some of that information will find its way into the next edition of the spreadsheet.

What was the thinking behind reducing the top division from twelve clubs to eight? Was that an acknowledgment that the talent in Cumbria was being spread too thinly?

Or is it all to do with what's going on in Lancashire? The future for the Northern League is not entirely clear at the moment, and it may be that that future does not include its four Cumbrian clubs. Might they switch north in a few years' time, thus creating - for the first time - one league including Cumbria's twelve top clubs?

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