One of Spain's newest cricket teams, Levante CC are having a successful first season in the ECCL Development League and they are now actively seeking touring teams from all over the world to come and play cricket in beautiful Valencia. Levante player and coach Andy Pilkington takes up the story ...
"The Valencian standard, the Senyera, billows lightly in the background atop the Torres de Serrano, joggers and walkers alike pause briefly to take in the action which arouses memories of lazy summers back home with the sound of leather on willow and the faint aroma of linseed oil or, as is more likely in this particular spot, to ask the ubiquitous “¿Que coño hacen?”
For some it is a little corner of England (or South Africa, or New Zealand, or Pakistan...) in some foreign land, while for others it is another world on their doorstep. This is the VCG – cricket in the heart of Valencia.
The home side, Levante Cricket Club, is striving for a league title in its first season of participation in Cricket España’s development league, but in reality a title would be somewhat secondary to the progress the club has managed to make in less than 18 months of existence.
Founded in the late spring of 2012 by a small group of ex-patriots, the Levante Cricket Club has moved from a group of lads chatting over a few beers in a local bar to a legitimate entity with an ever-growing membership base and title aspirations being just the beginning. The informal knock-abouts under the Alameda Bridge have been replaced by organized training sessions under floodlights, while the inter-squad matches on sparse rugby pitches have given way to tour games and league fixtures at the city’s baseball and softball facility which has ultimately produced a sense of home for the club and the sport in Valencia.
Located in the Turia gardens in Valencia’s dry riverbed, the VCG offers a somewhat unique experience for everyone. Levante is Valencia’s first ever cricket club to be based right in the city centre offering touring teams ease-of-access to accommodation, restaurants and post-game entertainment. The city itself offers a great deal too, from the ancient to the modern, parks to beaches, sightseeing to nightlife, all within one of Spain’s most friendly and relaxed atmospheres.
The climate also provides almost year-round cricket with Levante playing their competitive fixtures predominantly between May and September with tour dates available as early as late March up until the end of November.
The VCG is surfaced with the latest field turf which allows for a consistent, weather-proof outfield, while the adapted NottsSports roll-out wicket offers pace and consistency. The changing and storage facilities are first-rate with plans for a bar extension in place for the off-season."
Any team interested in further details can contact the club via its website http://www.levantecc.com