Altofts fly the flag for England at Headingley

LEEDS, ENGLAND - MAY 25: Alastair Cook of England walks out to bat during day two of the 2nd Investec Test match between England and New Zealand at Headingley on May 25, 2013 in Leeds, England. (Photo by Michael Steele/Getty Images)
LEEDS, ENGLAND - MAY 25: Alastair Cook of England walks out to bat during day two of the 2nd Investec Test match between England and New Zealand at Headingley on May 25, 2013 in Leeds, England. (Photo by Michael Steele/Getty Images)

Altofts Cricket Club U11s had a day to remember at Headingley as they were chosen as flagbearers for England’s Test with New Zealand.

The boys, who also played a game of Kwik Cricket on the famous pitch during lunch, welcomed the teams out with a guard of honour on the day Yorkshire’s Joe Root hit a maiden century.

They were one of ten junior sides chosen to for the event due to their work with the “Chance to Shine” campaign, an initiative which aims to bring cricket to UK schools.

Eight lucky youngsters were picked to attend on the day, and were given the additional prize of forming the guard of honour by match sponsor Investec.

The Altofts side on the day was Ben Walsh, Freddie Knox, Oliver Box, Naveen Vishnu, Brad Davies, Harry Wanbon, Toby Wheelhouse and Ryan Ward, who were given the chance to emulate their idols as they played in front of the West Stand crowd.

The team also had the chance to watch England train before the game, and get some pictures with the stars.

England won the Test by a comfortable total of 247 runs after centuries for Root and Alastair Cook.

Altofts also hosted the National Cricket Day last month, as more than 200 children from local school took part in the contest.

St John the Baptist School were victorious on the day, pipping second-placed North Featherstone to glory.

The other schools that took part were Oulton Primary, The Mount Junior and Infant School, Stanley St Peter’s Primary, Streethouse Junior and Infant School, Newlands Primary, Normanton Common Primary and Newton Hill Community School.

There were also 18 young leaders from Freeston High School, whose job it was to score and umpire the matches on the day, as well as help the children with the machines.

Volunteers from the club ensured the day ran smoothly, while ball machines were provided by Play and Sports Solutions.

The club also benefited from a grant from Coalfield Regeneration Trust, which allowed them to buy covers and sightscreens to host the event.

Altofts CC are currently on the lookout for young players for their junior teams.

The club currently runs age groups from under 7 to under 17, and three senior sides.

Youth team training takes place on Friday, with a £2 charge for those not registered with the club.

For more information, please contact the club on 01924 892708.