Date: 13th Apr 2024
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Date: 18th August 2023

By Tom Evans ( Merrseyside Cricket Online)




Colwyn Bay wicketkeeper to head to New Zealand as first recipient of Chris Weston Bursary


From Land of my Fathers to the Land of the Long White Cloud… a young wicketkeeper is heading to New Zealand for the winter thanks to a Love Lane Liverpool Competition bursary.




Colwyn Bay glovesman Luke Russell is the first recipient of the Chris Weston Bursary, set up to honour the recently retired league secretary.

The 21-year-old will have his travel and accommodation funded as he spends the winter playing for University Grange CC, in Dunedin – former home of Wigan skipper Aaron Redmond, as well as fellow internationals such as Suzie Bates and Will Somerville.

The Competition hopes it will be the start of a fruitful partnership, including the possibility of a player coming the other way next season.

For Russell, it’s a way of combining his passions for travel and cricket. 

He said: “I’m very excited.

“It’s my first time playing cricket abroad for a team – I’ve been to Australia and done a couple of practice sessions, but never actually played a game.

“I enjoy travelling, and obviously I love playing cricket. When the bursary came about, the committee forwarded it to me and said I was an ideal candidate.

“I applied for it and didn’t really think anything of it, and I was quite shocked when I got it.”

Club captain George Johansen said: “Luke’s a great young player and I know he’s looking forward to it. It’s very good of the Comp to help him out.

“He’ll come back to the club a better player, and it’ll be positive for him – I’m slightly jealous myself, to be honest!”

University Grange said: “The club is incredibly excited to have young talent from the UK come to develop their skills in a different country.

“We believe that Luke is a great player who will be a positive addition to our club culture. We cannot wait to help him develop his cricket at a high standard.

“The club also looks forward to providing some excellent New Zealand hospitality to give Luke a memorable experience off the field.




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