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Hello all!

It’s nearly time to put those wellies (waders more like) away and dig out the whites – and with that in mind I thought it would be useful to give you all an idea of the season to come. The fixture cards will be sent to print immediately after the AGM (17/3) so probably won’t be back with us until the week after Easter.

The Sunday fixtures are a mix of 3 Counties League and friendlies. The opening game is on 17/4 – this is the same type of trial fixture which we played along with the Sports Shed guys last year, and we’ll do the same again. There will also be a bbq and a few beers floating around to welcome everyone back. During these first 2 games we will need players to register and to pay their subs.The following Sunday (24/4) will be similar and then we play the first match proper (friendly H) on 1/5, followed by the first league match v Dorchester Casuals (A) on 8/5. After that there will be Sunday fixtures until the end of August (apart from the 2 Bank Holiday w/e’s). We have left room for a tour at the start of September (which Gibbsy won’t be organising….!) so if anyone wishes to have a go, please do.

Do please try to attend the trial matches – apart from being good fun they are really helpful for the Club Officers who will be running the sides this summer. Can’t stress that too much.

Evening cricket: we have decided not to enter the Ranston League this year. There were constant availability problems last season and also the League itself is nothing like it was. The Stingers (our evening friendly side) however went from strength to strength, so we have decided to concentrate our resources there this season. As I speak we have 19 games (although I’m still waiting on a couple more), and they range from the extremely friendly (Stur Profs, Milton etc) to more serious ( Compton House, Horningsham, Hinton and Stur etc. ). The first fixture is against Port Regis (A) on 3/5. The fixtures are played either on Tuesday or Thursday evenings, and sometimes both! We have a Wednesday fixture on 3/8. The evening season finishes with games on the 9th and 11th of August.

We are (beginning to sound like the Queen now – never takes long) introducing a new idea this year.  We’ve run a small 6 a side competition in conjunction with Waitrose for the last couple of seasons.  This year, on 26/6, we are doing the same and running alongside will be the Club Open Day.   The Club is entering its 20th season (God, that makes me feel old…) and there are still many in Buckhorn and our local villages who seem to know next to nothing about us. This is an opportunity both to advertise the sporting side of the Club, but also its social function.  So there will be food and drink etc, and Simon Dodd has arranged a Deep Purple gig for the evening. It is really important that as many of you as possible can attend this – even if not actually playing, there will be plenty to do and help with.

Junior cricket – this won’t really cross your bows, but we are starting again with a representative side in the North Dorset u9 League. It is so important to keep junior cricket going  – all the grants that Chris Sledge has so successfully applied for over the years are due to our commitment to Junior cricket.

One final date for the diary – the ground is of course very wet at the moment, but it has coped with all that rain far better than before (thank you new drains). If the weather can stay settled for a period it can dry remarkably quickly. Groundhog Day ( pitch, nets and ground preparation) is down for Saturday 2 April from 10am, so please come along and help. Meanwhile Ian, Malcolm and myself will get busy with the mowing and rolling as soon as we can.

All the very best and I look forward to seeing you all again,

Robin