New era as ex-skipper quits

DAVID CUFFLEY Former Norfolk skipper Paul Newman has left Horsford Cricket Club.Newman, who has captained the first team at Manor Park for the past three seasons, has told chairman David Browne he is giving up all the posts he holds with the club and will not play for them next year.

DAVID CUFFLEY

Former Norfolk skipper Paul Newman has left Horsford Cricket Club.

Newman, who has captained the first team at Manor Park for the past three seasons, has told chairman David Browne he is giving up all the posts he holds with the club and will not play for them next year.

The 48-year-old ex-Derbyshire opening bowler stressed his time at Horsford had been his most enjoyable in club cricket, but said he had decided to leave for “personal reasons”.

Horsford won the Norfolk Alliance Premier Division title in 2005, Newman's first season as captain, before beating March in the promotion play-off to book their place in the East Anglian Premier League.

In their first two seasons in the EAPL, they finished fifth and seventh.

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In a letter sent to club members, Newman said: “After long and careful consideration, I have informed David Browne that I wish to relinquish all positions I hold within Horsford Cricket Club with immediate effect and, unfortunately, I will not be playing cricket at Horsford in 2008. This has been a most difficult decision and one that took many weeks to reach but I must stress that it has been made purely for personal reasons.

“The past three years have, without doubt, been the most enjoyable club cricket experience of my long career. At the same time, I have had to deal with some difficult personal circumstances over the past 12 months that have re-shaped some of my priorities. Last season was particularly hard at times and therefore my decision may not come as a complete surprise to some members.

“I believe that in my three years at Horsford I have helped take the club forward, so it is with great sadness that I have come to this decision. Manor Park is a fantastic place to play cricket and the club is the envy of most other clubs in Norfolk.”

Newman captained Norfolk from 1996 to 2002 and stayed on as county coach, then team manager, until he resigned early in 2006. He moved clubs from Norwich to Horsford in 2005, taking over as first team captain from Tony Selby, and last year he became director of coaching.

Newman, who lives at Acle, said he was uncertain of his plans for next season, but thanked Horsford members for their support.

Horsford chairman David Browne said: “We brought Paul in with a job to do of getting us into the EAPL and we will be eternally grateful to him for helping us do that. We wish him well in the future, but it is a new era for Horsford and we are excited by the future.”

Horsford are likely to elect a new captain at their annual meeting on November 26.