20th Sep, 2018

Tributes paid to popular cricketer after his sudden death aged 29

Les Reid 30th Jul, 2018

A LEADING and popular figure at one of the Coventry and Warwickshire region’s biggest cricket clubs has died suddenly, aged just 29.

Husband and former Coventry schoolboy James Madley, known as Madders, was chairman of Kenilworth Wardens and captained the second X1 in the prestigious Birmingham and District League.

His death early on Saturday morning, just weeks after news emerged he had been diagnosed with cancer, has left the local cricket community in shock. Wardens’ five Saturday teams and opponents came together for a minute’s silence in his honour

Other cricket clubs, including those which compete against Wardens in the Midlands’ highest league outside the fully

professional County Championship, also paid their respects on social media, including Berkswell and Knowle and Dorridge.

The former King Henry VIII schoolboy leaves his wife Katie, who he married only last year, brother George, and parents Jon and Carol.

As chairman of the club in Glasshouse Lane, Kenilworth, he volunteered his time to improving the successful community venture which boasts nearly 20 adult and junior sides, including many players in Warwickshire’s youth set-up.

He was also a keen runner and a Tottenham Hotspur fan.

A statement from the club reads: “Kenilworth Wardens cricket chairman and second XI captain James Madley passed away on morning of Saturday 28th of July, at the age of 29 following a brief illness.

“Madders, as he was universally known, was involved with our club man and boy, throughout his time at King Henry VIII school, where he captained the first XI for two-and-a-half seasons, and at Sheffield University.

“Having worked his way through our junior sides, he was soon a second XI regular whose natural leadership qualities, likeable demeanour and cricketing nous made him a natural choice as captain in 2011 despite his tender years.

“Madders played a prominent role in steadying our cricket section at that time, then in its gradual rise to the position of strength it has enjoyed in the more recent past.

“He worked tirelessly behind the scenes on any number of projects, including the very successful floodlit cricket week, plus the more mundane jobs that are so essential to any community sports club.

“He was entirely reliable, totally committed to the cause, liked and respected by everyone who met him – in short exactly the kind of person every club needs but rarely find.

“As a batsman he was always steady and sometimes stylish – exactly the qualities he brought to the cricket chairman role which he took on in September 2016.

“Madders was also seen each year in the colours of the Old Coventrians and the Warwickshire Imps – with whom he was a popular tourist.

“The thoughts of everyone at Glasshouse Park are with his wife Katie, brother George and parents Jon and Carol.”

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