Brice’s pride at winning England’s oldest cup

Woodlands' spinner Chris Brice, right, and skipper Sam Frankland, left, with the Heavy Woollen Cup.
Woodlands' spinner Chris Brice, right, and skipper Sam Frankland, left, with the Heavy Woollen Cup.
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Experienced left arm spin bowler Chris Brice revealed his pride at helping Woodlands win England’s oldest club competition.

Brice began a Woodlands fightback which led to all 10 Hoylandswaine wickets falling for 67 runs last Sunday and along with captain for the day Sam Frankland, the pair jointly lifted the famous trophy, in the absence of usual skipper Pieter Swanepoel.

Speaking after last Sunday’s game, Brice said: “We haven’t threatened in the cups for a long time and it is something that (secretary) Brian Pearson and the club have been asking us to do for the last few years. We’ve now done it, against the odds this time with Soamsy (Grant Soames) coming back from injury and Swanny (Swanepoel) away on his jollies.

“Credit to Scott Richardson, that was his first bowling spell of the year and he’s come up with a five-for it was absolutely outstanding.

“The Heavy Woollen is the cup with the most prestige behind it.

“Everyone was made fully aware of the Heavy Woollen Cup and its prestige before the game and for a team like Hoylandswaine, who have dominated the Huddersfield League for as long as they have, to want to win this trophy as much as they did speaks volumes for the competition.

“A lot of our side are 21, 22 and 23 and have a lot of cricket ahead of them, so gaining experience in days like this will make them want more.

“When we last won this trophy we had a more experienced side and if anything, this means more, as these are a young set of lads and they are the future of the club.”

The Heavy Woollen Cup is England’s oldest club cricket competition, dating back to 1883 — a year after the Ashes were first played for — when Heckmonwike defeated Dewsbury and Savile by 65 runs.

Ossett are the most successful club in the competition’s 132 year history having lifted the trophy 15 times, with Heckmondwike and Batley registering 13 wins apiece.

Sunday’s victory was the second time Woodlands have won the cup, having previously defeated Spen Victoria in the 2004 final at Liversedge.