The Club are saddened to learn of the premature death of Nigel Peel at the age of 48.
Nigel joined the Club as a junior in 1978 and first impressions were that he was ” hopeless but very keen”. This is the equivalent of Gary Lineker`s school report which suggested that he would not make a career out of football!
At that time the Club had entered a team in the fledgling U.18`s South Manchester Junior Cricket League but also ran friendlies for the younger players. Nigel blossomed during those early years into a very fine right-arm fast bowler. His batting did not follow the same path and throughout his career he made last man in his position in the team. He was a member of the team that reached the Junior Cup Final in 1983 and 1984.
By the age of 16 Nigel was a regular in the 2nd XI and then represented the 1st XI with distinction from 1985 – 1988 taking in successive seasons 30, 41, 48 and 51 wickets. He topped the averages in the latter two seasons.
By this time his performances were attracting the attention of the Cheshire County Cricket Club and whilst it was a wrench to leave his friends and teammates with whom he had played for over 11 years, he was soundly advised to join a prominent club in the Cheshire County League with whom he could achieve those ambitions.
Nigel joined Bowdon in 1989 and made his debut for Cheshire v Oxfordshire in the Minor Counties Championship. He played for Cheshire until 1996 representing them 59 times in the M.C.Championship and 12 MCCA Knockout matches.
Whilst he was a competitive cricketer Nigel never used his speed to intimidate opposing batsmen and was courteous and friendly both on and off the field of play.
Nigel remained as a social member, latterly a Lifetime Patron of Hale Barns and paid us a visit last June for a reunion with John and Mike Eardley, Norman Brierley, Ian Price, Roger Strong, Alan Walton and George Middleton.
The President and members share in this sad loss and we extend our sincere condolences to Sian and Luke and members of the Peel family.