TOM HOOSON is delighted Connah’s Quay have the chance to banish the memories of a dismal 2019 campaign.

The Flintshire outfit failed to win a single North Wales League game last season, suffering relegation from the top-flight as a result of picking up just 16 points.

It looked as though Quay might have to wait until 2021 to right those wrongs due to the coronavirus crisis, but cricket has been given the green light and Hooson’s men made the most of their first game of the season.

Quay cruised to a 115-run home win over Buckley in Group C, and although there are no points to play for, winning is a habit Hooson hopes his side continue to enjoy.

Hooson said: “It was a great win for us, and something we’ve not done enough in the last two seasons, we’re glad to be moving on as they were low days for us all.”

Key for Quay is the return of experienced quartet Luke Bennett, who top scored with 81 against Buckley, Darren Jones, Lee Davies and Gareth Jones.

“It was good to be playing again, and it was even better to see Luke, Denz, Lee, and Gaz back playing,” continued Hooson. “All four are top players, and are top lads. Their experience will also be vital in making our young lads better players in years to come.”

Joining Bennett in the runs as Quay posted 261 for six were captain Hooson (58) and teenagers Josh Clarke (52) and Rhys Stout (45 not out).

Hooson said: “Luke did what he does best and took on the new ball, and he also shown a some gut on a tricky track when in the past he’s been criticised by people saying he hasn’t got that game.

“Josh and Rhys put on a brilliant partnership. For two 17-year-olds to manage the game the way they did was brilliant to see.”

Clarke then added two wickets as Quay’s bowlers restricted Buckley to 146 for six.

“The bowling was spot on from us,” said Hooson. “I asked Powelly (Dave Powell) to come in and help with the younger lads bowling, and they were well disciplined.

“In the last two seasons all our bowlers had been trying to bowl a wicket ball every ball, and we’d be chasing a big total.”

Wes Gillam and Rob Bennett are available for Quay’s trip to Halkyn, who suffered a 58-run defeat at Carmel and District last weekend.

Halkyn skipper Gareth Thomas said: “The positives are that we’ve got cricket back, but the negatives are that 12noon starts could put people off playing. It would have been logical to make it 30/35 overs a side and start at 1pm as normal.”

Carmel, who were set to play in Division Two after relegation from the second tier, are relishing tomorrow’s trip to Buckley.

Captain Danny Owens, who runs a bat repair, refurbish and making business, said: “The start of the season couldn’t come quick enough, after a disappointing campaign the lads were chomping at the bit to get back on the field.

“Although no points can be gained, a good performance was important in the first game at home to Halkyn, a team who almost went unbeaten last term in the league we should have been playing in.”

Elsewhere in Group C, Marchwiel and Wrexham head to Abergele and Mold host Ruthin

In Group F, Carmel 2nds host Buckley 2nds, Connah’s Quay 2nds face Halkyn 2nds, Abergele 2nds visit Marchwiel 2nds and Mold 2dns head to Ruthin 2nds.

Something has to give in Group B tomorrow afternoon.

Hawarden Park, who started their campaign with a six-run success at Denbigh, entertain a Gwersyllt Park outfit that claimed a one-wicket win over Pontblyddyn last time out.

And there’s two more teams looking to make it back-to-back wins going head-to-head at Clappers Lane as Gresford entertain Northop.

Daniel Williams’ Gresford opened up with an impressive 94-run success over rivals Brymbo, while Jordan Evans crashed a 69-ball unbeaten 102 to lead Northop to an 84-run triumph against Llay Welfare, despite Dave Phennah’s 6-22.

Llay host Brymbo tomorrow and Pontblyddyn face Denbigh.

In Group D, Mynydd Isa & Maeshafn make the long trip to Menai Bridge 2nds.

Other Group D fixtures: Bangor 2nds v Mochdre 2nds; Llandudno 2nds v Conwy 2nds; Pwllheli 2nds v Dolgellau 2nds.Group A: Bethesda v Menai B; Conwy v Llandudno; Mochdre v Bangor; St Asaph v Pwllheli. Group E: Brymbo 2nds v Llay 2nds; Denbigh 2nds v Pontblyddyn 2nds; Gwersyllt 2nds v Hawarden 2nds; Northop 2nds v Gresford 2nds.