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Durham boosting CricketForce

Gordon Muchall, Gary Pratt, Ben Harmison and David Barrick were amongst the Durham players who were happy to support the NatWest CricketForce initiative at the weekend as the county got involved with clubs in their locality.

With 1050 Club's signed up nationwide, 34 those in the County Durham area, over 70,000 volunteers braved the cold and demonstrated their DIY skills.

Nationally, it is estimated that between £20-25 million has been invested in recreational cricket.

Muchall, Pratt, Harmison and Barrick spent a few hours at Tynemouth Cricket Club on Saturday April 8.

Barnard Castle

The guys had a go at tiling the shower's and painting the spectator benches as well giving the youngsters at the ground a few tips in the nets.

Neil Killeen and Graeme Bridge visited Annfield Plain Cricket Club and Chester le Street Cricket Club while Mark Stoneman and Graham Onions leant a hand Blaydon CC and Whickham CC.

Development player Mark Turner popped into Gateshead Fell CC, Felling CC and Boldon CA to take a look at the work that was going on and award the Clubs their ECB CricketForce plaques.

Stockton born Mark Davies visited Norton CC on Sunday (9 April) while Middleton Teesdale CC and Barnard Castle CC benefited from a bit of help from Gareth Breese and Callum Thorp.

Middleton Teesdale unveiled their new practise nets, which were officially opened by Gareth and Callum.

Durham

Muchall said: "It was great to be able to go back to my old Club and give something back after all the support they have given me over the years. I think I did a pretty good job painting the benches, they'll definitely last a while!"

Cricket Development Officer Nick Brown said: "It has been fantastic that the players at Durham have supported NatWest CricketForce and been so committed to giving a helping hand.

“So many clubs have made a difference to their playing and social areas and although the immediate improvement of facilities is fantastic the real benefit is the legacy of the weekend which encourages local communities to use their newly refurbished community cricket Club's."