Maier’s msgic rubs off on Middleton - and future is bright

Rob Maier (centre) has been a coaching hit at Middleton  Picture by Louise Adams
Rob Maier (centre) has been a coaching hit at Middleton Picture by Louise Adams

Six months ago, capturing Rob Maier was a coup for promotion hopefuls Middleton CC – now the club have now reaped the rewards of hard work and quality coaching.

Great coaching is as important as having great players: it provides a foundation for long-term success and Middleton have found the perfect combination of social sport and achievement as both their first and second XIs have finished top of their divisions in the Sussex League.

Maier joined hoping to bring a new-found enthusiasm and long-term success to every age group, from under-nines to the first XI.

The former Middlesex and Ealing CC academy coach has brought structure and professionalism to training as well as installing the belief that sport can be rewarding, fun and inclusive all at the same time.

The first XI won the Sussex division three west title with eight players who have risen through every age group, a great sign for the club and for any future cricketers who fancy a chance at playing senior cricket.

Maier said: “It’s extremely pleasing to be involved with such a forward-thinking and dynamic club. It’s unique to find a club where you have so many people willing to give freely of their time. Volunteers are the lifeblood of any club and Middleton are blessed in this department.

“The club are building and we’re looking to develop an already-healthy junior section.

“We have really good young players and the majority of the senior side is made up of players in their 20s.

“Having players who enjoy each other’s company on and off the pitch works well. Congratulations go to the first and second teams on their promotions as well as the unsung heroes behind the scenes.

“The hard work starts again over the winter but we have a great future ahead of us.”

Middleton hope to introduce a third XI but need more people to dust off their whites and give cricket a go.

Middleton’s thriving junior section, headed by Brian Towner, sees nearly 50 young cricketers train weekly. A new girls’ team is planned next year.

ED TOWNER