Colne ready for the end of 'friendship'

Ali Azmat is Colne professional

Ali Azmat is Colne professional

First published in Sport

COLNE skipper Matt Walker says everyone at The Horsfield is touched by the show of support from across the cricket family – but admits all that friendship and goodwill towards his men will end at 1pm tomorrow.

Colne, the oldest club in the Foster’s Lancashire League, face an uncertain future and have launched a Save Our Ground campaign to raise £100,000.

Clubs from around the league and further afield have been quick to offer their support, including tomorrow’s first day opponents Todmorden.

“It’s been a really great response,” said Walker.

“People talk about the cricket family and this proves that everyone does come together.

“Everyone at Colne really appreciates what other clubs are doing for us – and we would always do the same for anyone else.”

However, Walker knows that any support will end when the umpires shout ‘play’ at Centre Vale.

“All that goodwill will be forgotten when we start,” laughed the 28-year-old.

“Tod will want to beat us and it will be just the same whoever we play.

“But that’s the good side about cricket. You play hard and try to get your result and then you are mates afterwards.”

Colne finished bottom of the league last year but even after their winter of discontent, Walker says there is a belief in the Horsfield dressing room.

They have brought in Tom Bradshaw and Adil Ali from their bitter rivals Nelson while another former Seedhill man Andy Hakin has moved to Colne from Ramsbottom.

And with former Earby professional Ali Azmat at the club Walker is quietly hopeful.

“Last year was tough and we want to improve,” he said.

“The lads coming in are all assets for us and other teams have lost players so we really want to be moving up - and it would be lovely to finish above Nelson.”

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