2014 was another season of fine cricket played by SWPCL clubs.
The year began in dramatic fashion with the demise of our former champions Sully Centurions, who requested a return to the G&MCL. This provided an unexpected reprieve for Cardiff CC, who had been relegated at the end of the 2013 season. For the third successive season the final action took place at Marespool. Cardiff, having already completed a home win, waited anxiously at the Diamond Ground to see if Mumbles could take the final wicket and snatch the championship from their grasp. After an hours wait, the result from Marespool came through and Cardiff were 2014 Champions. Cardiff also secured the 2nd eleven title and the following day won the Welsh Cup in an all SWPCL final. It is to Cardiff’s credit that they had a wonderfully successful season with a team packed with exciting young talent.
Another great day at the SWALEC Stadium saw Port Talbot Town lift our T20 title. The 2014 Fair Play winners were Newport.
The 2015 season will see us welcome back former champions Ammanford and former members, St Fagans. If has been an extremely busy time for all involved in South Wales cricket since the end of last season and this has led to some positive developments for the SWPCL. As you will be aware, Cricket Wales have led the discussions across South Wales Leagues and leading clubs regarding the formation of Premier League 2 for the 2015 season onwards. Consequently, I have been able to offer the warmest of welcomes to Aberdare, Carmarthen Wanderers, Miskin Manor, Panteg, Penarth, Pentyrch, Swansea, Tata Steel, Tondu and Ynystawe, the clubs who will enter Premier League 2. On behalf of the SWPCL Management committee I would like to thank our new member clubs for their commitment and enthusiasm for what I believe will be an exciting addition to the cricket scene in South Wales.
I would also like to express my thanks to the Premier League 1 clubs for their patience and support during the time it has taken to achieve this expansion to the Premier League competition. I believe that this development will serve cricket in South Wales well as we go forward. While this development has not been universally welcomed it will be the aim of the SWPCL Management Committee to maintain and develop positive relationships with the Glamorgan & Monmouthshire Cricket League and the South Wales Cricket Association. We are grateful to Roger Morris and Peter Hybart from Cricket Wales for their leadership in making this development possible and Hugh Morris and Glamorgan CCC for thieir support.
Another important development has seen us secure new sponsorship in the shape of Thomas Carroll Group PLC. who have long been tremendous supporters of South Wales cricket. We are delighted to begin a relationship that will support our development. We have also been strengthening our links with Wales ACO and hope that we can play our part in the development of officials, as well as our clubs and players. We have strengthened the management committee this year by inviting Ieuan Watkins to join us. Ieuan will advise us on welfare/protection matters. I can think of no one better to help us in this area.
So, after a very busy winter our attention can now turn to the prospect of an exciting 2015 season.
I cannot finish without once again thanking Steve Jones, for his tireless dedication to our administration, Clive Franklin for his financial expertise and in particular his work in securing the support of the Thomas Carroll Group and the management committee for their commitment.
Finally I would like to wish all our clubs, players and officials an enjoyable and successful season in 2015. Paul Morgan, Chairman South Wales Premier Cricket League