Cricket is back!
After months of uncertainty fear and lock down the government and ECB have given the green light for recreational cricket to resume, which I hope you will all agree is fantastic news. The club have been working hard behind the scenes throughout the lockdown period to make sure we were ready to play as soon as we got the go ahead.
That kick off is this Saturday, there is an interclub game on Saturday and a friendly away at Redlynch on Sunday. It would be great to see any members not playing in these games to show their faces at the rec on Saturday or Redlynch on Sunday to support the teams and enjoy a cold socially distanced beer at the bar.
Moving forward competitive cricket will be returning to the club from Saturday 25th July with both the 1st and 2nd teams entered in the Hampshire Cricket boards social bubbles leagues. Giving both teams 6 competitive league fixtures (weather permitting) on Saturdays across July and August. We are also running a friendly XI on Sundays for the rest of the summer aimed 3rd team cricketers and those who are not able to play on Saturdays.
Next Saturday 18th see the 1st and 2nd teams travel to South Wilts and Amesbury respectively for what are classed as preseason friendlies but I think with local bragging rights at stake they will only be friendly in name.
Midweek cricket is returning as well, the First team will look to build on last season’s final appearance in the Wiltshire Wallop, the format for this will be agreed this week but it will be great to see some high quality T20 back at the rec. We will also be playing games on Tuesday and Wednesday nights as normal they may not be competitive or league based but there will be some T20 cricket for the entire club.
I am sure you will be asking “will it be safe?” “How does cricket meet social distancing guidelines?” The ECB has published a number of documents explaining some small adaptions to allow us to play the game we love in a safe environment for all. These Documents along with the clubs COVID risk assessment are published on the website for you viewing. The high end overview is that we will not be using changing rooms or having tea’s players will be expected to come ready to play, and bring their own food and drink. There will be short breaks every six overs to sanitise hands and the ball. Fielders will have to be 1 metre apart at a minimum, and finally the biggest change is that there will be running lanes for batters to make sure they keep distance from bowlers and umpires.
It is going to look slightly different to normal but as a club we are going to put everything in place to allow you all to return to cricket safely and enjoy playing the game we all love again.