Having a wicket time for Groundwork Trust

Last Friday evening, a team of excited staff left work early and headed to Crompton Cricket Club, Shaw for an evening of cricket with O2/Telefonica. The event, sponsored by us, was also attended by our friends from Oldham Althletic FC and Oldham Council, among others. The aim of the evening was to raise money for Groundwork Trust Oldham, a charity focused on community engagement, tackling climate change and improving employment by creating green jobs. Arriving at about 2:30pm with our pull-up banner in tow, we quickly realised that we were among seasoned cricketers, and braced ourselves for an afternoon of hard work!

It had been a rainy week up until Friday and we were concerned we’d be rained off. Thankfully, the clouds parted and we were left with the above gorgeous view. Our first game was against backroom staff from Latics, so we expected our opponents to be up for it, which they were: they shut us out with only 14 runs all out. Our next match was against the event organisers O2, and things didn’t look good. Electing to bat first, we finished with a similarly measly 16 (in defense of our team, we were composed entirely of people unfamiliar with cricket). Incredibly, when fielding we ended up making our opponents sweat. Out of nowhere, Head of Development Shaun Austin took 3 wickets in a single over – this is impressive even by pro standards – and Apprentice/Wicket keeper Ryan caught another batsman out soon after. Our Cinderella story in the making was soon shut down by the next batsman though, who cooly hit a couple of campaign-ending boundary shots as though swatting at flies. We’ll get them next time!

More importantly, a lot of money was raised for a great local cause. Make sure you take a look at Groundwork UK and have a look at what they’re doing for communities across the UK.