Skipper Ryan Bradshaw calls time on five-year Harrogate reign

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Ryan Bradshaw will play his last game for Harrogate Cricket Club as captain on Saturday after announcing his resignation from the role.

Bradshaw has skippered Harrogate for five years and has taken the St George’s Road club from the pits of the Yorkshire League into the top four teams.

He came closest to winning the Yorkshire League in 2012 when rain handed the title to reigning champions York.

Bradshaw said: “I agreed when I first came back to Harrogate that I was going to do five years to try and get the club back to being a formidable force in the Yorkshire League.

“When I took over we were bottom of the league and there wasn’t much structure.

“I am a man of my word and I’ve done those five years.

“We have brought Harrogate back into a top club but my only regret is that we didn’t have any silverware to show.

“That’s the next step for the club, to nail that championship.”

Bradshaw’s vice George Ross, 21, will take over the role next season.

The school teacher added: “We are leaving a better infrastructure in the first 11 squad. There are four or five players in the second team that could do a job in the first team, and there are some really good young lads coming through.

“It’s brought a higher quality to the first team.

“George will have support around him to move the club forward in his own way. The aim has to be to go and win the Yorkshire League now.”

Gate will wrap their 2014 summer up against champions Yorkshire Academy on Saturday, and a win would see Bradshaw’s men complete a topsy-turvy season in third.

Saturday’s home clash against Doncaster was washed away due to persistent drizzle.

Bradshaw was hopeful his side could make up for their “embarrassing” humiliation at the hand of the Academy earlier this summer, when they suffered a 273-run defeat.

The Academy, who secured the title on Saturday, made 315-9 that day, before bowling Gate out for just 42.

“They caught us on a difficult week when players were out,” said Bradshaw.

“They absolutely hammered us.

“They have a strong side at the moment but we will do our best to get third spot.”