Heathcoat staging Townsend Memorial Game on Sunday
HEATHCOAT will be paying their annual tribute to former secretary Graeme Townsend on Sunday on the ground he loved so much.
Graeme, who was born disabled and spent large parts of his life in a wheelchair, loved his cricket and channeled his enthusiasm into working for the Knightshayes club and supporting brothers Gareth and David.
Gareth played for Somerset and Devon and now coaches at Surrey.
David also played for Devon before emigrating to Australia.
Graeme was Heathcoat secretary from 1990 until he died in 1999 and kept busy as 1stXI manager and scorer, as well as sitting on the Devon committee
Both Graeme’s brothers played for Devon and Gareth was on the books at Somerset for four years.
The match, now in its 18th year, isn't just to remember Graeme, but played as a fund-raiser for junior cricket.
The format is the same every year: a Graeme Townsend Select XI against A Tiverton & District XI in a 40-over game for the memorial trophy. Start time 2pm.
“This is the 18th match, and many of our original stalwarts are falling by the wayside,” said Graeme’s dad Terry.
“Several who have played from the start have retired or fallen by the wayside but we are looking to bolster the team by introducing some young players.
“Over the past few years we have introduced some father-and-son combinations.
“To date we have six and there could be more when the teams are finalised.”
The District XI follows a similar pattern with old school friends and club players who were associated with Graeme's through local clubs and the indoor league.
The match starts at 2pm and all friends of Heathcoat are welcome to attend.
The 30-over game has a recent history of close finishes. It ended in a tie in 2013 and 2014. Last year the Tiverton & District XI won the game by one wicket with four balls to spare – Jamie Drew hitting a six to clinch it.