by Ross Slater
The man who lived every local cricketer’s dream has joined Ilkeston Rutland for the 2013 season.
It is a decade since John Trueman stood on the steps of Lords with the National Knockout Cup in one hand and his Man of the Match medal in the other.
His 89 secured Sandiacre’s glory in 2003 and fittingly he left the club after helping them to a third Premier League title.
“A few clubs expressed an interest in me joining them but I went for Ilkeston,” said John, 44.
“I have enjoyed playing against them over the years and now I am looking forward to playing alongside Dave (Smit) and Rob (Green), players I have a lot of respect for.’
Trueman and Smit sit side-by-side in the Premier League all-time run scorers list with Trueman (10,591) sneaking past Smit (10,570) last year, and Rutland will hope they can build many a partnership together.
Last year, a good start turned sour with the club finishing ninth, but the arrival of Trueman and the return of Ian Banks after a season captaining the 2nd XI makes them appear a stronger unit.
Smit has replaced Rob Green as captain with Michael Chambers as his deputy and they will be hoping the younger squad members - Luke Marriott, Dan Bobeszko and Sam Moulds will build on their successes of last season.
They start their 2013 campaign with a trip to Elvaston on Saturday. The 2nd XI, under the new stewardship of Bryan Smith, will entertain Clowne Town at the Rec while the 3rd XI face Stanton Elks at Gallows.