A FATHER and his sons were either team-mates or rivals in a Bradford League clash earlier this month.

Dad Gary Wainwright opened the batting for Buttershaw St Pauls, who also included his youngest son, 15-year-old Charlie, who bowled against his brother Adam, 21, who opened the batting for visitors Northowram Fields in their Division Two clash.

Gary scored 32, including three fours and two sixes, for St Pauls in their 146, with the visitors replying with 147-4 in quick time, skippered by Adam, who made 24 (three fours and a six), with Charlie taking 0-31.

The sides had also met on August 14 at Northowram, with Gary making 31 in St Pauls’ 156, the hosts then knocking off the runs for six wickets, including opener Adam being out for a golden duck.

Charlie was in the second team that day opening the bowling.

Gary, in the twilight of a very solid Bradford League career at the age of 47, says: “I won that bet for most runs on August 14 but then came the re-match, with nothing at stake but pride.

“Charlie was told before the match that he would be opening the bowling against Adam, and bowled three overs, which included a few no-balls in his first over – maybe he was trying too hard, but he did well.

“Adam went on to get 24 and they knocked the runs off in about 18 overs.”

Gary added: “In the first match there was a little bit of banter between Adam and myself and we went for a full English breakfast together at Woody’s Diner, which I own, at Woodside Community Centre, before the match, and then enjoyed the build-up to the game.

“It is not often that you have a dad playing with his youngest son against his oldest son and there was a nice bit of banter over dinner on an evening about ‘I am going to do better than you’ and ‘you are going to do better than me’, but I came out on top in terms of scoring in both games but Buttershaw lost both games.”

Mind you there were nearly four Wainwrights involved as Gary revealed: “We were so short on Friday evening that we even thought about asking my dad to play, and Alan is 75.”

Charlie admitted: “We were giving each other a bit in terms of banter.

“My bowling didn’t go the best, although it went okay for my brother - because it was my brother and I was trying to get him out I tried too hard and overstepped a bit.

“It was a difficult decision as to which game to play in. I wanted to play with the second team because it would have been good to get promotion with them, but I wanted to play with my dad against Adam.

“It was a memory, and I will hopefully have plenty more chances to get promotion.”

Gary said: “I may have outscored Adam in those two games, but it is about consistency.

“I may do it in one or two games out of 10 and he does it eight games out of 10.”

Wainwright, who hasn’t played much in recent years, then explained how he came to be playing this season.

He said: “Charlie broke into the second team this year and they were a bit short in the cup game and they said ‘do you want to play with your son?’, so that was another box ticked at Lightcliffe and I got 80.

“Next week I was in the first team and I got the inspiration to think about playing against Adam a few weeks afterwards.

“Then Charlie broke into the first team the week before. He then had a big decision to make because the second team were up for promotion, so it was either promotion with the second team or to make memories with myself against Adam in the first team.

“That was a massive box ticked, everybody was happy and there was a lot of family there.”

Wainwright, who has also played for Woodlands, Cleckheaton, Lidget Green, Bankfoot, Brighouse and Morley, will be switching roles next season, taking over player recruitment at Buttershaw with Paul Carroll and Kamran Siddique and said: “I am looking forward to it.

“We will probably have a squad of 12 for the first XI, and Paul and myself will be numbers 13 and 14 and play as and when needed.”

While Charlie has played all his junior cricket at Buttershaw, Adam has already played for four different clubs.

Gary explained: “Adam started off at Buttershaw and came through the ranks aged 17, winning everything, and then went to Bankfoot with Jack Wakelin and Dan Colehan, and then got the chance to play at Lightcliffe in the Premier Division for a year.

“It was hard work getting him there and he had a couple of scores but then he went back to Bankfoot and then to Northowram Fields.”