Fernhurst Cricket Club are on the up – in more ways than one
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A barnstorming run of wins means they are going straight back up as champions.
Captain Joe Unwin said: “This year has been a huge success. The squad have all pulled together to create a well-performing team but also one everyone loves being a part of.
"The atmosphere within the team this season has been great, which has allowed us to start bringing a couple of junior players into the squad, who have exceeded expectations.
"Heading into Division 2 we will be aiming to compete with the top.”
One of the main reasons for relegation last year was a lack of consistent player availability; something which has been corrected this year.
It coincides with the opening of the fantastic new pavilion, for which Fernhurst CC raised so much money.
The president of the I’Anson League, Keith Ellis, presented the squad with their medals and handed Unwin the Miller Cup.
Ellis said: “You’ve dominated the division this year. Rarely have there been more worthy winners of the Miller Cup than Fernhurst.
"It’s brilliant to be here in front of your wonderful new pavilion.
"This is a proper club, with a proper ground full of proper cricketers and on that basis alone you deserve this trophy.
"Your cricket has obviously been outstanding this year, after a couple of difficult years.
"It’s great to see you back on an upward trajectory.”
It is the first time Fernhurst CC have won the Miller Cup, which was first presented in 1922 to Shottermill CC.
After several ups and downs for FCC, this is the first time the first XI have been promoted as champions since 1999, when they won Division 2.
The I’Anson League is believed to be the oldest, continuous league in village cricket. Fernhurst CC applied to join in 1996.
FCC Chairman Jon Meier said: “After two challenging seasons for the first XI, this year has been fantastic.
"New skipper Joe Unwin and vice captain Sam Meier have led selflessly all season and created an excellent atmosphere among the team.
"Welcoming back some established players has given them a solid foundation, enabling us to integrate some of our talented youngsters into the set up and give them their first experience of cricket at this level.
"The club as a whole is rightly proud of their achievement and the future looks extremely bright as we look ahead to challenging in Division 2 in 2024.”
The first XI are not the club’s only champions. Fernhurst U15s won their division in the Surrey Junior Cricket Championship (Tier 2 West).
They have travelled far and wide since the start of May and put several ‘big’ clubs to the sword.
Fernhurst CC have been transformed over the past 15 years from one with no junior section and struggling for members.
They now have several junior teams, the ‘Fernhurst Flames’ women’s and girls’ team and three men’s teams.
Excellent nets and square and the new pavilion attract members from across the district. FCC even have an occasional playing member who is resident in Texas.
New members are always welcome. Fernhurst CC believes in Sport for All, low membership fees and find a team or a role for everyone.