CALLING all cricketers! The Church Times is looking ahead to its 2016 Cricket Cup competition. At present, a little over half the English dioceses put up a team (none, currently, in Ireland, Wales, or Scotland). Now, as the international aspect of clergy cricket is developing (News, 30 October 2015), we hope that other dioceses will be tempted to re-enter the competition.
The existing cricketers will attest that there is little that compares in terms of health, comradeship, networking, and pleasure — even if the game is lost. But the pressures of parish and diocesan life have taken their toll, and so in recent years we have allowed teams to augment their clergy contingent with up to three laypeople (women play as well, of course).
This is the list of the dioceses that played last year: Birmingham, Canterbury, Carlisle/Blackburn/Durham (a joint team), Chester, Chichester, Coventry, Exeter, Guildford, Leicester, Lichfield, Liverpool, Manchester, Norwich, Peterborough, St Albans, Salisbury, Southwark, and West Yorkshire & the Dales.
There are some notable omissions: Oxford, York, Bath & Wells, Chelmsford, and Winchester have all progressed well through the competition stages in the editor’s memory, and others have put up a good showing.
If your diocese is not currently represented, and you fancy a game, please contact the editor, stating which diocese you’re in. Help and advice will be forthcoming, especially if you are happy to have a hand in putting a team together. In the last resort, the rules also allow you to play for a neighbouring team. (Non-clergy players must be in full-time Christian work in the diocese.)
If your diocese is represented, the chances are they’re still looking for players. International standard (in fact, any standard) not required. Again, if you don't know how to contact your diocesan team, email the editor and he can put you in touch.
If you are a team captain or a secretary, please email to confirm your place in the competition this year, not least because the editor needs an up-to-date contacts list. This is important.
Urgent: as teams are now drawing up their fixtures, please email the editor by next Friday, 26 February: firstname.lastname@example.org.