BLACK Torrington Cricket Club had to call off yet another North Devon League game when they could not raise a side for a meeting with Bradninch on Sunday. But although this was cry off number five out of their six matches this season, they are determined

BLACK Torrington Cricket Club had to call off yet another North Devon League game when they could not raise a side for a meeting with Bradninch on Sunday.But although this was cry off number five out of their six matches this season, they are determined to try and "keep things going" at their Beara Court Ground. The cricket club plays on land that a local person purchased for some £15,000 three years ago with the promise that the club could use it for their home base for as long as they wanted."We have worked tirelessly to improve the standard of the outfield and square, but there's only so much a hearty few can achieve," club stalwart and secretary Brian Harrington, told the Gazette."I think the younger lads locally have decided that to play cricket, they need to go elsewhere and we are desperate for an injection of players."Mr Harrington, Kenny Vallance and his wife Eileen are part of the small, but very enthusiastic, group who are battling to keep the club going. Mr Vallance is officially the grounds man and, as he explained, pitch preparation is a family affair."Eileen and I were working to dusk and beyond on Friday to get a pitch ready for Sunday's game with Bradninch," said Kenny. "My wife was on the tractor and I was on the roller. It's a labour of love for sure, but we don't mind. "All I want to see is the cricket continued and some younger blood to step forward and play for us." With the side still facing eight fixtures, starting with a June 28 trip to Witheridge for a game with Nomansland, there is a ray of light with the news that local village side Halwill are also facing it a struggle to field a side. Perhaps a link up between the two will help Black Torrington keep the "grim reaper" at bay. "This is the heart and soul of grass roots cricket," added Mr Harrington. "The ground was originally part of the Beara House grounds, hence the name today. We are a keen and committed small group of cricket lovers but time is against as we are getting no younger, hopefully something will come from this present crisis and maybe, we'll have a brighter future." Anybody interested in helping out at Black Torrington is asked to contact Kenny Vallance on (01837) 53650.