Catus Cricket Club

History of CCC

Past to Present 2004 to 2012

Catus CC has its origins in 2004 at Monclera near Cazals where Gary Heilbron, an Australian, arranged friendly matches which were played on coconut matting. Over the next two years membership grew, as did a recognition amongst many of the members that better playing facilities were required if the Club was to develop further.

The close season of 2006 to 2007 saw rapid changes when discussions with the Mayor of Catus, Claude Taillard, revealed him to be a huge sports fan and willing to offer a fine picturesque area of flat land near Lac Vert at Catus, plus provide the financial backing for the purchase of a quality synthetic strip and practice nets. Thus Catus Cricket Club came into being with Alan Frank, whose positive relationship with the Mayor greatly aided the process, becoming the first President. The ground was officially opened by Mayor Taillard in 2007.

Around the 2007-2008 period there was considerable enthusiasm and momentum within the club. This was seen with Simon Coldrick coaching youngsters, superb fundraisers and a decision to enter the league run by ACCSO which covers the South-west of France.

Entry into the league, whilst guaranteeing a regular flow of competitive fixtures, also highlighted the difficulties for a rural Club in competing against the likes of Bourdeaux and Angouleme with larger catchment areas, also containing young and enthusiastic ethnic minority groups. After two years of moderate success in the league some members, mainly those who will politely be described as "in the twilight of their cricketing careers," felt burdened by the commitment required and travel involved. So, with considerable reluctance Catus decided not to enter the league in 2011. The decrease in fixtures during that season resulted in the decision being reversed for 2012, despite concerns about the club,s playing strength.

2012 was a most extraordinary season for Catus Cricket Club and to say achievement far exceded expectations would be a gross understatement. Newly appointed Captain but longstanding club member and official, Ken Sutton, realised the team needed significant strengthening if it was to compete effectively. On what can best be described as a "tip off" from the ACCSO President he made contact with some young Bangladeshi guys keen to play cricket. Three new talented players were thus secured and Catus, throughout 2012, was a very competitive outfit. However, three new players do not a cricket team make, yet they seemed to inspire and galvanise those previously called the "twilighters" into extraordinary performances and add to this the arrival the previous season of all rounder, Richard Harris, then Catus began to be noticed.

During 2012 Catus played 19 matches winning 11 and losing 8 with only one defeat to a touring side.They also reached the prestigious Siddals Cup Final by beating a youthful, very talented team from St. Aulaye in the semi-final, and gave a good account of themselves in losing to an extremely able Noé side in the final.

Whilst the Catus Cricket Club is buoyant and optimistic at present, notes of caution should be sounded. Most Clubs playing in the ACCSO League in season 2012 have, at times, struggled to raise teams. The ex-pat population is aging and with economic and currency issues, plus people working longer in the UK fewer than previously will be arriving to supplement teams. Catus will continue to encourage the belief that cricket careers can be extended, plus try to do more to develop youth interest in the game, and also hopefully add to our enthusiastic group of Bangladeshi players. Achieve this and the Club can look foreward to a long, enjoyable and hopefully succesful future.