ENGLAND cricket hero Alastair Cook was the special guest of Great Brickhill CC on Saturday night as the Villagers held their awards night and celebrated yet another highly successful season.
The club secured a quite remarkable fifth consecutive promotion last summer when they won Cherwell League Division Two, and England batsman Cook was the man to give out the awards.
From very humble beginnings, Brickhill have quickly made a name for themselves on the regional cricket scene and are now just two further promotions from playing at the highest level a village team can – in the Home Counties Premier Division.
Their fantastic rise to success began in 2007 when they won the Four Counties League Division One title and took up a place in Cherwell League Division Five.
And they quickly became too good for that level as well, going on to win the title and maintain their unbeaten record which saw them go two years without defeat.
Divisions Four and Three also fell to the men from Brickhill, before something of a surprise was waiting in Division Two this year and suddenly they had to get used to something they were very unaccustomed to – losing matches.
Brickhill lost four times this season but still did enough to clinch the Division Two title ahead of nearest rivals Banbury. They also enjoyed an extended run in the 2011 National Village Knockout Cup.
Brickhill’s good times haven’t just been restricted to the club’s 1st team, with their 2nds, 3rds and Sunday sides also enjoying success over recent seasons, thanks in no small part to the efforts of the club’s pool of talented youngsters, and all under long serving club captain Lee Morgan who has helped turn the club around.
And after another memorable year, the club celebrated in style at the Three Locks Golf Club, with two-time Ashes hero and friend of the club Alastair Cook on hand to give out the awards.
He is pictured above with 1st XI skipper Graeme Carter who won the John Betts Cup for outstanding performance of the year. That came in a match away to rivals Banbury when he made 90 not out to help his side to an unlikely four-wicket victory which set them on their way to their fifth consecutive promotion.
Other awards included Anton DeBeer picking up the Highest Runs prize for his incredible 1,100 scored during the season.
Elliot Patterson won the Colin Harman Cup for Young Player of Year, and James Wagg had the Best Bowling Average.