OLD HABERDASHERS CRICKET CLUB
The Old Haberdashers’ Cricket Club was formed in 1947 to compliment the winter sport side of the Haberdashers’ Old Boys Club. There had traditionally been annual matches against the School, apparently since 1906, but it was only post-war that the opportunity arose for the formation of a full time Old Boys’ cricket team. So, on 20th July 1947 the first official match took place against Old Merchant Taylors resulting in a narrow loss. As membership grew a 2nd XI was formed and began playing in 1950 managing to fulfil five fixtures that particular year. After some lengthy negotiations with the Old Haberdashers’ R.F.C. a cricket ground was developed within the Croxdale Road headquarters finally opening for cricket in 1954.
From 1989 the O.H.C.C. has entered two XIs in the Saracens’ Herts. League and has experienced a series of promotions and relegations over the years. The 2nd XI was the first team to be victorious winning Division 9 and the last few years has seen further success for both teams with the 1st XI coming second in Division 6B of the Herts. League in 2015 and gaining promotion and then in consecutive seasons winning their division of the League and in an outstanding season in 2016 won all of the16 completed matches. The 1st XI is currently playing cricket in Division 4A of the Herts. League.
The 2nd XI unfortunately had to withdraw from the Herts. League in 2012 but since then a steady improvement in playing numbers, mainly from the School, has meant that the team has reformed and is now once again playing league cricket and in its first season back in 2016 topped Regional Division C East to gain promotion to the next division and the following season again were victorious and gained yet another promotion and is currently playing in Division A West.
Although the Old Haberdashers’ C.C. is not an open club, we do welcome friends and family of Club members and anyone connected with the School; anybody interested in playing should contact the Club Captain, Rhys Jenkins or the 2nd XI captain Shajeen Shailendra (details below).
Keeping in touch with the activities of the O.H.C.C. is very easy by logging on to the Club’s own web site www.oldhabscc.co.uk which gives details of the Club’s fixtures and results together with all the latest news about the O.H.C.C. Additional information about the Saracens’ Herts. League can be found on their web site http://www.hertsleague.co.uk. Results and league tables are updated each Saturday evening.
THE LEAGUE STRUCTURE
The Saracens Herts. League now comprises divisions of up to 10 teams playing home and away on Saturdays from May until the first week in September usually starting at 1.00 pm.
The season is now played as 50/50 limited over format with fielding circles and bowling restrictions. There are promotion and relegation (usually two) between the various divisions and matches are usually highly competitive and of a good standard.
OLD BOYS’ DAY
One of the highlights of every season are the cricket matches against the School at Elstree played for the W.R. Tanner Trophy, in memory of the longstanding stalwart of all things Haberdashers. Generally, this has been between the Club and School 1st and 2nd XIs but on occasion there have been three matches on a Sunday towards the end of June. The matches are of a 50 over limited overs format and the Old Boys are the current holders of the trophy.
The Old Haberdashers’ Cricket Club has been touring Devon since 1960, with a short break in the 1970s when player availability was poor. Since its resurrection in 1978 there has been an O.H.C.C. team in Devon every summer at the end of August and 2015 saw the fiftieth such occasion; unfortunately the weather gods were reluctant to play their part that year as three of the matches were rained off without a ball being bowled.
The Club plays six matches from Sunday to Friday with players rushing down the M4 on a Sunday morning for the first match and then heading back in the reverse direction on a Friday evening in readiness for the league matches on Saturday.
The tour is for players of all abilities with good value hotel accommodation presently located just on the outskirts of Exeter and the evening’s dining and watering taken most seriously with the Club visiting some of the best hostelries in the area!
Over the decades we have played a great many of the Devon clubs and our fixture list at present comprises amongst others Kilmington, Heathcoat (on a beautiful National trust property), Exeter, Cullompton and culminates on Friday at the stunning beachfront ground of Sidmouth.
Not content with the Devon trip, in 1997, to celebrate the Club’s golden jubilee the Old Boys undertook an ambitious and highly successful two-week overseas tour to Zimbabwe which, as everyone who went on the trip will testify, was a highlight of their cricketing careers. It is hoped in the next year or two that a similar such tour can again be undertaken.
The season comes to an end with the annual dinner held towards the end of October in the Committee Dining Room in the Pavilion at Lord’s Cricket Ground where the season’s awards are presented at the ‘home of cricket’. The catering by the M.C.C. chefs is of an extraordinary standard and it proves to be a most enjoyable and memorable evening each year.
The Old Haberdashers’ Cricket Club exists to offer the opportunity for people connected with the School and their friends to continue playing cricket in a friendly and relaxed environment. A warm welcome is therefore assured and anyone who is interested in joining this ambitious but inclusive Club should contact any of the officials listed below.
CLUB DETAILS & OFFICERS
Old Haberdashers’ Cricket Club
Herts WD6 4PY
Telephone: 07890 680513
Web site: www.oldhabscricketclub.co.uk
Saracens Herts. League web site: www.hertsleague.co.uk
President Simon Gelber 07836 382604
Club Captain Rhys Jenkins 07786 640916
2nd XI Captain Shajeen Shailendra 07984 302322
Secretary Robert Clarke 07762 112506
Treasurer Simon Gelber 07836 382604
School Liaison Stuart Haring 0208 266 1980
Fixture Secretary Meekesh Shah 07912 613327