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Ian Kerr - 43 seasons and counting

Graham Watt

Every club across the NCU needs its own fair share of clubmen and certainly at Cregagh we have been extremely lucky in having one of the best in the form of Ian Kerr.  I’m sure we all have ideas of what makes the ideal clubman, but for Ian, not just happy at his sons playing he will try and recruit any player who he comes across to come down to Cregagh for a game, and is now lending a hand within our junior section passing on his knowledge to the next generation.  

This season is a landmark one for Ian, one that we believe will not be beaten at our club.  Ian joined Cregagh in 1968, living close to the Cregagh Road and attending Harding Memorial it was a natural progression to play cricket at Cregagh his local club.  What has followed has been incredible as Ian has now played for Cregagh during the 60s, 70s, 80s, 90s, 00s and now the current decade sees Ian still turning out for his beloved Cregagh as he enters his 43rd season spanning across 6 decades.

Peter Kerr, Ian Kerr & Aaron Kerr
(Peter Kerr, Ian Kerr & Aaron Kerr)

But that is only the first unique aspect of a recent trilogy of events.  The 2nd event occurred last season when Ian took the field for the 1st XI with his two sons Peter Kerr and Aaron Kerr.  Most Father’s would like to take to the field with their son at some point, Ian managed to do it with both sons in a 1st XI match.  To complete the trilogy of events Peter’s century against the PSNI now means all three Kerr’s have achieved centuries in the black and gold colours of Cregagh.  A feat that I doubt will ever be surpassed.

Cregagh 1st XI Section 4 League Winners 2007 - Ian, Peter and Aaron in the back row
(Cregagh 1st XI Section 4 League Winners 2007 - Ian, Peter and Aaron in the back row)

At a time when we all complain about how cricket can be a time consuming hobbie the example Ian set and continues to set speaks volumes.  When Ian took up employment in Scotland he thought nothing of coming back to Belfast to play cricket for Cregagh!  Moving the family each weekend to play cricket and turn out for Cregagh, that is the measure of the man, that in our opinion is what makes Cregagh’s clubman the best! 

All this time that Ian has invested over the years couldn’t have been managed without the support of his wife Laura.  The teas during the mid to late 90s are still remembered and Laura is still there on a Saturday assisting with the teas and supporting Cregagh both on the field and off it.

Ian has won leagues for senior teams throughout his playing career, a Graham Cup winner (the only time Cregagh won the Graham Cup) he has also accumulated 3 half centuries across Europe representing Cregagh on our recent tours.  His two sons have followed him to Cregagh with Aaron representing Ireland at under 15 level and now Peter who is the current 1st XI captain yet I suspect his greatest achievement was keeping the club alive in the mid 90s when everyone else had given up.  His mantra at the time ‘not on my watch’ ensured we would get through those times with the help of Philip Walker it must be said.

So on behalf of the Committee at Cregagh, the players both senior and junior and most importantly from all your friends a big thank you for the total and absolute commitment that you have shown towards our wee club to ensure Cregagh Cricket Cub is still in business.

PS           You available on Saturday?

PPS        and Sunday?