FORMER Lancashire cricketer Kyle Hogg has been lured out of retirement by Uppermill who have named him head coach and first-team captain for the forthcoming season.
And the 37-year-old all-rounder, who began his playing days in the juniors at Greenfield, is looking forward to playing again six years after being forced to quit the first-class game because of a back injury.
“What I have missed most since retiring has been the dressing room and the craic with my mates day in, day out,” he explained.
“A lot of my friends still play at Uppermill and that also influenced by decision to join them, and I am looking forward to getting back involved in cricket.”
Hogg, who also turned out for Delph during his Lancashire playing days, is also excited to be playing in the Greater Manchester Cricket League for the first time.
“I have not heard of some of the teams we play so will be visiting new grounds which will be good,” he continued.
Hogg, who is a level three coach, already does work with Lancashire women working with girls aged between 12 and 19 years.
In a statement, Uppermill said: “Kyle will be tasked with youth development as his primary role and will be holding junior and senior training sessions for Uppermill Cricket Club.
“The club is very proud to have brought Kyle back to the area to pass on his skills and enthusiasm to the next generation of budding cricket stars.”
Hogg arrives with an impressive CV. He finished his career with 280 first-class wickets from 114 matches with eight five-wicket hauls and one 10-wicket match return. He also scored 2,708 runs with 16 half-centuries.
He admitted it will be a case of trying to work his way back into playing again and see how his body handles it.
“I have played only once in the last six years, and that was a benefit match for my former Lancashire team-mate Steve Parry,” he explained.
After retiring, Hogg moved into the music industry as a tour manager for SJM Concerts, for whom he worked for six years.
But when the initial lockdown last March halted concerts, he lost his job.
Though Hogg lives in Bramhall, he still visits his grandfather Sonny Ramadhin, the West Indies cricketing legend who lives in Delph.
Hogg added Ramadhin has been frustrated by lockdown as it has prevented him from playing golf which he is still doing aged 91 at Saddleworth.
Pakistani all-rounder Ayaz Tasawar, who was Uppermill professional in 2018 and 2019, has signed as paid man for GREENFIELD in the premier division of the GMCL.
Tasawar, a left-handed batsman and leg-spin bowler, would have returned to Uppermill for a third season in 2020 but for Covid-19.
The all-rounder is keen to challenge himself in the highest division of the GMCL though, like for most overseas players, there will be termination clause in the event of the player being unable to take up the post because of coronavirus.
MOORSIDE have a new South African pro and overseas player as they prepare for their first full season in the premier division of the GMCL.
Jurie Synman, 25, who is primarily a batsman, is the new professional. He has an impressive record representing Easterns. He is also a spin bowler.
Ruben van Niekerk, an attacking batsman and right arm quick bowler, will be the overseas player.
Aussie Peter Skuse has returned to SADDLEWORTH where he was once professional.
The 50-year-old, who becomes first-team captain and coach to the juniors, has spent the last five years at Millbrook club Stayley where he was skipper.
Skuse said: “I have had a great time at Stayley where I have made good friends and I will go back for a beer with them.
“I received a phone call from Saddleworth where I spent a lot of time as a professional.
“The opportunity to go back and get into coaching was too good an opportunity to miss out on.”
Saddleworth are looking to build on their promotion from their division in the GMCL in 2019.
“The club lost a lot of players in 2018 and were forced to drop down a couple of divisions, but they are determined to get back to where they once were,” he said.
AUSTERLANDS have re-engaged Pakistani Imran Rafiq, a batsman and spin bowler. who had been due to become their professional in 2020.
Rafiq, who has represented Pakistan Shaheens, a representative side the equivalent of Pakistan A or Under23s, has previously been pro at Townville in the Bradford League.
Returning to Thorpe Lane is South African C J Ferreira as the club’s overseas player.
The popular all-rounded was at the club in 2015 and 2016 but been unable to return after losing his amateur status which has now been reinstated.
Austerlands have lost all-rounder Peter Higginbottom who has joined Glossop.
The club is looking to recruit a wicketkeeper for the new season to replace James Holt who joined Shaw last season.
FRIARMERE have re-engaged South African Adrian Du Toit as professional but, in the event of him being unable to travel, they will look to recruit a UK-based replacement.
“Adrian is part of the Friarmere family who helped us win our league in 2019. We will be devastated if he can’t return,” explained secretary Gary Kershaw.
West Indian Jamie King will be back as overseas player but, as he is now resident here, there will no be any issues about him playing.