CALLUM Parkinson says Bolton’s “super six” now hope to take the Lancashire academy by storm after inspiring the county’s youth team to “unprecedented” success.
The former Heaton junior captained a Lancashire Under-17s side that included six players from the town to a double cup win this week, beating Wales by 24 runs in the Royal London One-Day final before rain forced them to share the two-day championship with Surrey.
Parkinson, aged 17, took 5-37 against Wales while his twin brother Matt claimed 2-31 and 16-year-old Horwich bowler Chris Brownlow finished with 2-43.
Bradshaw wicketkeeper Bradley Yates took two key catches, while Farnworth Social Circle batsman Josh Bohannon hit 21 runs.
England U19s star Haseeb Hameed, who started his career at Social Circle, also featured in both finals, while Bury batsman Harry Dearden, who hit a half century in the trophy win, makes up a close-knit group of local youngsters in the county set-up.
They first played together for the U11s and progressed through the age groups, claiming national trophies at U14s and U15s level.
Lancashire academy director John Stanworth led the plaudits.
“In the space of four days, we’ve picked up two national trophies, which is unprecedented in our history. It’s a pretty special time,” he said, before picking out Callum for special praise.
“Callum has captained the side with a real energy. His bowling has created control for us in challenging situations and he’s got a real energy and desire to improve. Callum is a strong contender for an academy place in time.”
Callum, who is moving into his second year of A-Levels at Canon Slade School, says claiming an academy spot is now top priority for him and his team-mates.
“I think only Chris will be eligible for the U17s next season, so our double win marked the end of an era,” he said.
“I guess growing up together has made our successes that bit more special. It really helps we know each other’s strengths and personalities inside out and I hope we can carry that on into the academy.
“It will be up to the U19s coach as to whether we all get signed up and we are all aware it is not going to be easy at a county like Lancashire, but I believe we will all achieve our dreams to become professional cricketers, if not here then somewhere else.”
Hameed and Callum’s brother Matthew have already made that next step and have gone on to represent England. Matt was named man of the series in England U17s’ recent victory over Pakistan after taking three six-wicket hauls.