Director, Domestic Cricket
I wish to extend my thanks to all clubs who took the time to consider the question of regionalisation of the lower end of the junior leagues. Clubs who responded were split with a range of strongly in favour to strongly opposed, however the majority were opposed to regionalisation at this time.
The NCU Domestic Cricket Directorate will therefore be making no proposals regarding regionalisation in accord with the clubs’ expressed preferences.
The main objections were:-
- Travelling to other parts of the NCU and meeting other clubs and players had always part of the NCU practice and ethos, and that would be diminished.
- Insufficient cricket for those who wanted it.
- Complications regarding the make-up of leagues on relegation to the regionalised leagues.
- The risk of more than one team from the same club in the same league.
- Imbalance in the standard of cricket between the teams in the various leagues to be regionalised.
In response the Directorate view is that point 1 is valid up to a point. The mixing of clubs/players post match has reduced significantly with players anxious to get home. Further, cup competition would not be regionalised. Many players represent more than 1 team through the season.
Point 2 we believe could be addressed by having 3 separate knock out competitions at the end of the season. An idea put forward by Instonians CC. The winners in a league championship/promotion, the runners up in a plate and the third placed teams in a bowl. Giving the keener and more successful teams more cricket and the opportunity of playing in a final/winning a trophy.
Point 3 can also be addressed relatively simply. The leagues themselves can be changed to accommodate a relegated side. There are sufficient sides capable of fitting comfortably into more than one section to accommodate this.
Point 4 – this occurs from time to time in any event. If possible teams from the same club would be divided into different sections.
Point 5 – again this is accepted as valid up to a point. An entry level of division 6 for younger players is in fact lower than for some clubs already.
It remains the view of the Directorate that regionalisation in some form has merit. The idea is therefore not “abandoned”, and we hope that this exercise has opened a debate that may ultimately prove to be to the benefit of all clubs involved.