New Clarence River Cricket Association president Tom Howard at his Grafton bookstore.
New Clarence River Cricket Association president Tom Howard at his Grafton bookstore.

Business owner saves cricket

THE sound of leather on willow will continue to resonate around the Clarence Valley after local business owner Tom Howard put his hand up to lead the association at a special meeting last Thursday night.

Howard has been involved with Brothers Cricket Club for several years and answered the call from the association to step into the top job as president of the Clarence River Cricket Association.

Outgoing president Shaun Ulrick was forced to reconvene the annual general meeting after there were initially no volunteers to take over his role.

But Howard strapped on the pads and stepped up to the crease to ensure the association will continue its proud traditions.

"The crisis call was definitely the catalyst for me stepping into the role, but its something I'm really looking forward to," Howard said.

"The CRCA already has a really good structure in place at the commitee level and it will give me another focus to contribute something positive to the community."

Howard has said that he was also looking forward to greeting the completion of the Ellem Oval upgrade, which will make the ground a showcase for cricket in the area.

"We have some terrific facilities in the district, but more importantly, we have a lot of great young players coming through the grades.

"Last season we had Australian under-19 representative bowler Brad Chard playing here and there is some super talent among the younger brigade.

"I'd also like to work to ensure cricket gets more exposure in the community, as there are so many positives to work with."

Howard is also the vice president of Brothers Cricket Club and manager of their first grade side in which his son Barney plays.

"I've been involved with Brothers since I moved here around 12 years ago and was playing long enough to enjoy playing with both my sons Sam and Barney," Howard said.

"But my love for cricket started as soon as I was old enough to hold a bat and play against my older brothers."

Neil and Judy Disson also stepped up to answer the association's crisis call and have filled the positions of vice-president and secretary respectively, while encumbent committee member Brett Loveday will stay on as treasurer.

The cricket season is pencilled in to start after the October long weekend.



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