Don lands top service award

Tynemouth's Don Catley receives a NatWest sponsored OSCA for his work as secretary of the North-East Mid-Week Cricket League from joint nominator Ian Warne and league president Dr Malcolm Kennedy, CBE.
Tynemouth's Don Catley receives a NatWest sponsored OSCA for his work as secretary of the North-East Mid-Week Cricket League from joint nominator Ian Warne and league president Dr Malcolm Kennedy, CBE.

TYNEMOUTH Cricket Club’s Don Catley has picked up an OSCA from the England and Wales Cricket Board.

Don received a NatWest sponsored OSCA for outstanding services to cricket in the ‘leagues and boards’ category for his work as secretary of the North-East Mid-Week Cricket League since 1974.

Apart from his more recent involvements with Tynemouth CC, Don has helped transform a collection of only six teams playing friendly midweek cricket in the early 1970s into a thriving and competitive league of up to 44 clubs.

At the annual presentation evening at Blue Flames, Don was presented with his award by committee member and joint nominator Ian Warne and league president Dr Malcolm Kennedy, CBE.

Don is now invited to a national awards day at Lord’s.

He thanked Ian and the NCB for the award and said it was an honour for the league itself and testimony to the way it had steadily grown in stature over many seasons.

Recently, the League President’s XI defeated a Northumberland League XI, skippered by Paul Smith, to regain the Duke of Northumberland Cup.

Don has worked tirelessly for the best part of 30 years as secretary, treasurer and information secretary of the league to guide its development into the thriving league it is today.

The recognition from the ECB stats: “Most of Don’s work is unseen by the vast majority of those who play in the league.

“He never actively seeks recognition for his work, instead preferring to work behind the scenes, ensuring the smooth running of the league.

“Those of us on the management committee are fully aware of Don’s commitment, loyalty and dedication to the league at a time when other leagues are struggling for adult players.

“The NEML now has five divisions and 44 teams, a long way from its inception in 1972 and six clubs.

“The north east cricketing world would be a much poorer place without his undoubted passion and organisational skills.”