York cricket captain Dan Woods honoured with memorial statue

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The life-size memorial sculpture looks out over York Cricket Club's first-team pitch
Image caption,
The life-size memorial sculpture of a celebratory Dan Woods overlooks York Cricket Club's first-team pitch

A "truly inspirational" cricketer who died aged 32 has been honoured with a sculpture and memorial garden looking across the pitch at his cricket club.

Dan Woods joined York Cricket Club in 2009 and captained the first team for seven years before coaching the juniors.

He died of cancer earlier this year, but his memorial service in March was cancelled because of Covid-19.

Instead, York Cricket Club members paid for a sculpture and memorial garden.

Image caption,
The memorial sculpture was inspired by photos of the cricketer celebrating on the cricket pitch

The 6ft (1.8m) metal outline of Mr Woods celebrating on pitch was unveiled in a ceremony at the club for friends, family and club members and created by Yorkshire artist Eddie Roberts.

"I drew him and I drew him day after day", Mr Roberts said.

"It took a while but I think he's there, I believe he's there."

Image caption,
Artist Eddie Roberts said he was anxious to capture "the spirit of the man"

York Cricket Club chairman Nigel Durham said Mr Woods was "truly inspirational" at the club for more than 10 years.

"He was a very good captain and a very good player but above all, he was a wonderful human being and an example to everybody," Mr Durham said.

"He was respected, he always listened, the players adored him."

Image caption,
Chairman Nigel Durham said Dan Woods was a "wonderful human being" and inspirational at York Cricket Club

He added: "He's missed by all of the cricket club, all those he taught, all those he coached and obviously his wonderful family and partner Heather too."

The club said Mr Woods was committed to young cricketers and was "probably one of the best coaches" the club had ever had.

Mr Durham said to "drive forward his legacy" for youth cricket, the club's new pavilion, to be finished in spring, will be named after him.

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