Napa Valley Cricket Club

Napa Valley Cricket Club’s opening batsmen get ready for their July 1 game at Marin Cricket Club. Andrew Healy photo

The parochial tug of war between the North Bay counties of Napa and Sonoma is well known and goes back decades. On Saturday, another chapter will be written in this long running trans-Mayacaman rivalry.

It could be dubbed the “Battle of the Wine Country,” but given that cricket is such a gentleman’s sport the only battling that will be done will be with bat and ball.

The Napa Valley Cricket Club will host the Sonoma Gullies from Santa Rosa in the first of two games during the 2012 season at the Fairgrounds in Calistoga.

Captain Tim Irwin, born in Australia, said, “Local rivalries are as old as sport itself and down under we have plenty of them. It’s great that there is an active cricket team in Sonoma as it allows us in Wine Country to have our own rivalry of sorts. When it comes to deciding whether Napa or Sonoma produces the best Chardonnay, Zinfandel or Cabernet, we’ll leave that to others to judge, as we’re hoping that our performance on the field will leave the spectators in no doubt that Napa is the Wine Country “King of Cricket.”

Napa Valley Cricket Club is hoping to field a strong team for the game as they welcome back Caen Healy, an incoming freshman at Napa High School, from his summer of cricket in Dublin, Ireland.

Club President Phil Bourke of Treasury Wine Estates said that “with the summer holidays almost behind us, we can call on a larger pool of our members for the rest of our games this 2012 season, which will stretch into October. That being said, we’re always keen to have new folks sign up, particularly locals who we’re happy to embrace into our culture of social cricket.”

The 60 over game (30 for each side) starts at 10:30 a.m. on Saturday and should finish roughly by 4 p.m.

More details on the Napa Valley Cricket Club can be found on napacricket.com

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