Here at CRICKETher, we’re passionate about women’s cricket at all levels, including club cricket. It’s our mission to offer coverage of women’s (and girls’) club cricket wherever we can! So – we’re starting a new feature. ‘Club of the Month’ will focus on one women’s or girls’ club every month, giving you the lowdown on their highs, lows, and everything in between.
If you’d like to see your club featured here, get in touch – we’d love to hear from you!
North Maidenhead Women’s CC (Berkshire)
The women’s section of North Maidenhead CC was formed in November 2013. The club chairman, Tony Drake, had been approached earlier that year about the possibility of starting a ladies side by current player Tameena Hussain, after she decided she’d rather be playing cricket than netball! Tony then partnered with Jon Stewart from Thames Valley Cricket Academy, and Jon led a 6-week indoor taster session, attended by 26 women each week. The decision to form the club was made from there.
They play at the beautiful North Maidenhead CC ground at Summerleaze Park, Maidenhead, Berkshire. Chairwoman of the section Laura Higgins describes North Maidenhead as being “very committed to providing excellent facilities”.
In fact, support from the men at North Maidenhead has been crucial to the club’s development. Jon Stewart is still their main coach, and they have also enjoyed coaching from the NMCC men’s coaches. Club chairman Tony remains one of their biggest supporters.
They’ve also been inspired by local England star and Berkshire captain Heather Knight, who has been down to the club to coach them. Berkshire are playing several of their fixtures this season at the North Maidenhead ground, and a strong North Maidenhead club contingent was present earlier this season for the Berkshire-Surrey match, to witness Heather making 65 and cheer on their county!
This season they are facing a new challenge, as the club will be participating in the inaugural Thames Valley Women’s League. Their first League fixture of the season is this Sunday (31st May) against Oxford. (Full fixture list here.)
“We’re really looking forward to it,” says Laura. “We’re not sure how we’ll get on but we know everyone will give it their best shot.”
While some of the club’s players have been invited to try out for Berkshire this season, the focus of North Maidenhead is clearly on participation, and making sure everyone feels they can get involved. Many of the current players were total beginners to cricket when the club formed in 2013. Laura describes the highlight of the last 18 months as: “Winning our first match and seeing how happy everyone was! The team bonding has been awesome.”
Laura says the club are always keen to welcome new members: “we are happy for anyone to be part of the team – we are a very welcoming and social club!”
Anyone interesting in joining North Maidenhead Ladies should contact Social Secretary Ali Wetherall (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Laura herself (NMCCladies@gmail.com).
We hope to keep you updated with how North Maidenhead Ladies perform over the coming season. Good luck girls!