Harry Cooke serves up a recipe for success
Harry Cooke was the toast of the Shropshire cricket scene after bagging an incredible two hat-tricks in one game.
The talented all-rounder’s amazing feat was achieved during a devastating stint of seam bowling that saw him claim eight wickets for just six runs in the county’s under-15 clash Herefordshire.
And to further highlight his undoubted potential, Cooke has also proved a hit with the bat by scoring a century against Bedfordshire, 98 in the clash with Worcestershire and a further two half-centuries against Herefordshire and Staffordshire to help his side to the top of their ECB County Cup group.
Cooke, who has progressed through the Shropshire age groups, has already attracted the attention of Worcestershire and is part of their sub academy.
And Shropshire’s performance cricket manager Ed Ashlin is delighted to see the Shrewsbury School youngster making the most of his talent.
“To claim two hat-tricks in the same game is an incredible achievement,” said Ashlin.
“The umpires said on the day that they had never seen it before and we are not sure if it has ever been done in county junior cricket before.
“It was a lovely moment for Harry, and the team as well.
“He is a player who has progressed through our pathway from under-10s and 11s. And he has been included a little bit with Worcestershire in their sub academy programme.
“He started playing his cricket at Market Drayton but is now at Shrewsbury School and plays his club cricket for Shrewsbury.
“He is a very talented and very smart cricketer. He is very mature and is a good example of a cricketer who works hard to get the most out of his ability.
“Hopefully he can keep working hard and carry on doing well.”
Cooke’s superb run of form started with the bat in the clash with Bedfordshire at Newport.
He stroked his way to an unbeaten 111, which together with 48 from Gregor Beardsmore, helped Shropshire to 247-7 from their 50 overs after they had been asked to bat first.
In the reply, Adithya Manigandan took 3-35 and Will Lewin 3-26 as the visitors were dismissed for 218 to give the hosts victory by 29 runs.
Cooke was also among the runs during an impressive batting performance against Herefordshire at Wroxeter.
After losing the toss, Shropshire rattled up 254-9 with opener Tom Saji hitting 62, Cooke 61 and Beardsmore 29.
Cooke’s amazing return of 8-6 then saw the visitors hustled out for 83.
A rain-affected game against Staffordshire at Longton CC also saw Shropshire claim victory with Beardsmore this time leading the way with the bat.
He hit 70 off 77 balls, Cooke chipped in with 53, while Saji and Lewin both contributed 25 as Shropshire batted first and finished on 228.
In the reply, Harry Slater had taken 2-19 as Staffordshire reached 82-4 after 22 overs when the weather closed in and Shropshire claimed the victory under the rain regulations.
Their only setback for the side came in a high-scoring game against Worcestershire at Kidderminster Victoria where Cooke once again shone.
Batting first, they hit 276-5 with skipper Will Lewin leading the way with an unbeaten 107 while Cooke was dismissed two runs short of another century and Beardsmore hitting 25.
Despite wickets for Dan Handley, Harry Slater, Manigandan and Cooke, the hosts got home with nearly three overs to spare.