History of Overseas Players
It is no coincidence that in the past 20 years there has been a large number of players joining the Altofts ranks from the Victorian Cricket Association in Melbourne, Australia. In particular, there have been no less than 4 players to don the Altofts colours from the one club in the VCA, namely Essendon. Dave Hampton was the first to play at Altofts way back in 1986. Dave has since had a fantastic district career with Essendon and more recently Fitzroy/Doncaster. In 1989 and 1990, John Shannon ventured into the Central Yorkshire League to join Altofts in a very successful period for the club. John is regarded as one of the best district cricketers in the last 30 years and was named in Essendon's team of the century. It would not be argued at Altofts that John was one of the best acquisitions the club has made both on and off the field.
It wasn't until the 2002 season that another Essendon player was to step onto the field for Altofts. Jodi Hutchison, an accomplished district player in the VCA, provided the club with good all-round results which culminated in a century at Mirfield P.C. in very quick time. Jodi has since had a great year for Essendon and taken away the Mick Mitchell Award, Essendon Cricket Club's highest honour.
The Altofts-Essendon tradition continued in 2003 with Cameron McKinley joining the club for his first season in England. Cameron, a left-handed all-rounder, has been with Essendon for 8 years and made his debut in the 1st XI in the 2000/01 season, making 96 against Northcote. Not only have Essendon players made the journey down Lock Lane in recent years. Other Victorians to have played at Altofts include test legend Dean Jones, who came over as a fresh-faced 20 year old, and Michael Foster who was a first-class player for Victoria in the late 90's. North Melbourne's
Barry McCormick is also in Altofts folk law after playing in the mid 90's for 2 seasons. 2004 saw the arrival of Faisal Khan, an English based former first class batsman/wicket keeper from Pakistan. Faisal, a Right-handed batsmen and Saqlain Mustaq style off-spinner had a good season finishing second in the batting averages.
In 2005 the C.Y.C.L. Committee decided to ban overseas players outside of the premier league. Luckily, Clive had a lot of connections in Australia, and secured the services of English Born Ben Coleman. Ben is a Left-handed batsman Left Arm Off Spin bowler who plays his cricket at Frankston.
In 2008 Overseas players were reinstated and Altofts signed Luke Popov from Melbourne, Australia. Luke was proved to be pivotal in Altofts winning the league and gaining promotion back to the CYCL premier league. Luke scored over 500 runs and took over 50 wickets in the 2008 season.