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FRENCHAY are working hard on flexible and adaptable plans to celebrate their 175th birthday as cricket waits to hear exactly how much play will be possible this summer.

The club – proud to be the oldest in Bristol and South Gloucestershire – have announced a flagship fixture against the MCC on July 9.

But dates for other events, such as a clash against a Bristol & District League representative side and a game involving the Western Storm women’s squad, will be confirmed further down the line.

Vice chairman Mike Donaldson said: “The announcement about the road map out of lockdown has given many cricket clubs and players a lot of hope for the summer.

“But one thing we learned from last year is that while we all like to be organised and know exactly what’s going on, we also know we will have to ‘go with the flow’ when we have a better idea of what might be possible.

“We’re all volunteers here, and there’s a lot of unsung people behind the scenes doing a lot of work, and while we don’t want to be wasting anyone’s time we also do want to celebrate the landmark … Congresbury pipped us to 175 two years ago, but we’re very proud to be the oldest club side in the city of Bristol and South Gloucestershire.”

Frenchay are also proud of their vibrant girls and women’s section which has seen 19-year-old wicketkeeper Nat Wraith progress all the way to the Welsh Fire squad for this summer’s The Hundred, a new 100-ball competition designed to take the sport to a new audience.

Donaldson added: “We’re still in discussions with Western Storm about tying something up, and we’re also keen to have some kind of celebration event involving our youth section too, although we’re not yet sure what format that may take.”

Frenchay, whose first team are in the Senior Division of the Bristol & District League, will this summer be fielding three other Saturday sides, a Sunday XI and more than ten junior teams as well as running the Frenchay Falcons for players with learning difficulties.

And inbetween all the cricket, officials will be continuing to work on ambitious plans for a new pavilion and dressing rooms at the Bob Stone Ground, just off the M32, which has been home since the move from Frenchay Common in 1952.


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