As the season has drawn to a close, we look back at the 2021 junior season with a short summary from each junior manager...
The Under 11s started the season with a young, and inexperienced squad. The bulk of the squad was the previous season’s U9s team, who had played played very little or no hard ball cricket the season before.
With no winter nets, it wasn't a surprise that the squad got off to a slow start, losing their first two games. The positive was that the first two teams played were by far the standout teams in our group, and went on to finish 1st and 2nd.
As a team they settled into it and battled on, training well and playing hard, and went on a run of 6-7 games unbeaten, including beating one of the teams they had lost to at the start of the season. A third place finish behind the top two very strong teams was a good return.
Every member of the squad showed huge improvement and willingness to learn as the games went on, with the majority of the squad attending junior training nights and also additional training sessions.
By the end of the season, 4 members of the Bury CC squad had been selected for and represented Bury District U11s (Zach, James, Lucas, Harry), who went on to win the mini group tournament with victory in the final game.
Thanks to the Parents for all the time and effort bringing the squad to games and training, and also to Ben and the club coaches for everything through the season.
It was a good positive season this year for the u13s. We started slowly in our first game against Middleton but were much improved in the second game at a very cold Walshaw. While some of the kids looked like snowmen playing in lots of layers, I remember looking over at the parents on the side who reminded me of a group of penguins huddling together for warmth.
We narrowly lost that game in the last over which seemed to set a theme for the next few games with a number of narrow defeats. I must take this opportunity to again say thanks to the u11s who played in those early games.
Our first win came at Elton a couple of games later. Elton won the toss and elected to bat and they clearly didn’t know that our bowlers were completely on their game that morning (I don’t know what they all had for breakfast but I would encourage it every week). We restricted Elton to 69 all out and it was great to see 6 different bowlers taking wickets and what was also positive to see was 8 of the 10 wickets were clean bowled.
Our best batting performance came against Walshaw in the return fixture which was a lot warmer than the first but sadly a lot wetter. Bury batted first and in our 20 overs we scored 152 for 6. That day again it seemed to click, and we were playing nice shots finding the gaps and the training that the team had done around running between the wickets and calling really paid off. Unfortunately the rain took the win from us on that day when the match had to be abandoned when we had Walshaw 6 for 1 after 4 overs
What was encouraging this season was we started the season having to use U11s to make up the numbers to turn 11 players out but by the end of the season we had grown to 17 players in the U13 squad. A real positive was due to the training and the larger number of games this season every player progressed and developed.
Over the season we saw 5 different players score over 30 and retire (some on a number of occasions) and two others scored well into the twenties. On the bowling side what was fantastic to see was that nearly every player from the 25 who played for us this season all took wickets. Basically only Noah our wicket keeper didn’t take any wickets but he took some excellent catches.
This was very positive to see because unlike some other clubs we weren’t relient on one or two players and we let all players have a bowl and they all equipped themselves very well. All the players should be proud of themselves this year with how they have developed and progressed and a big thanks must go to the coaches who have been down on a Tuesday night all season rain or shine helping them to develop.
Like me I hope you are all looking forward to winter training and another fantastic season next year.
Bury CC U15s played 7 matches in 2021, not many games in what felt like a half season. But despite the lack of matches, the squad pulled together and started to improve from game 1. It was always going to be a tough season with having such a young side and only having 2 players of age. That said I was happy with the team in the end, they had learnt a lot, especially the younger ones playing against essentially young adults.
We were competitive in all the matches and I can honestly say we had chances in every match! We didn't take many of them but that's the game and we did well to learn from them. We played 7 matches, won 1, had 1 abandoned and lost 5.
As a unit, the progress made in the end was incredible, great to see so many learning so quickly and to think that they could compete at that level was a testament to training hard and well and a tough, enthusiastic attitude!
A massive thank you from all of our juniors to Matt, Ben, Ammar, Dom, Paul, Nick, Neil, Bryan, Dan and everybody who has volunteered to help the junior section throughout the 2021 season.