GARETH White, the captain of Cumbria Cricket League champions Cockermouth, faces a nightmare 12 months on the sidelines.

White, 40, was told on the eve of the new season that he wouldn’t be able to play throughout the summer after suffering a serious foot injury while on holiday. He is currently house-bound, getting around on crutches, and even reflecting on whether he will ever play again.

He recalls: “I was on holiday with the family in Cyprus and got involved in a game of football on a 3G pitch at the hotel. My foot jammed the ball in a tackle and I felt something snap. But at the hospital they did X-rays and found nothing broken. I came home in a cast and when I had that removed at hospital the nurse said she didn’t like the bruises and where they were on my foot.”

“Basically I had snapped a ligament which helps holds the bones together in my foot. I have to put no weight on it and if the bones move I have to go in immediately for an operation,” added White.

“Fortunately, I have done a lot of cycling over the last 12 months and my foot is strong, which will have prevented the injury being even more serious.

“I was taken down to watch a bit of the game on Saturday when we lost to Carlisle but I’m not a good spectator and I could only think about whether I would be able to play again next season. We had built a good side last season and it was terrific to win the league.

“We were looking strong again, with a good new professional [Kavishka Anjula] and I was hopeful of retaining the title, and I shall miss being a part of that side tremendously.”

n Cumbria League preview: Page 32