By Derren Howard
County cricket will make it’s long-awaited return to the Saffrons in May next year.
Sussex County Cricket Club confirmed this week they will play Gloucestershire in a one-day 50-over contest as part of the the Royal London Cup on Sunday, May 14 at Eastbourne Cricket Club - it’ll be the first time the Saffrons have hosted Sussex since 2000.
Eastbourne chairman Ian Fletcher Price said, “We are thrilled Sussex have recognised the progress we have made as a cricket club.
“It’s been a long while since we have had the chance to welcome them and we are all looking forward to it.
“The credit must go to the support we have received from the business community of the town.
“The support they have shown us with the Lashings has been fantastic. Without that show of enthusiasm it would have been impossible for Sussex to return to our famous out ground on the east of the county
“It’s great local clubs and junior cricketers will be able to see their county favourites at such close quarters.”
The club are eager to impress in May and hope to make Sussex at the Saffrons a regular fixture in Eastbourne’s sporting calender.
“We as a club realise we have to deliver,” added Fletcher-Price. “We want to make this the first of many and make this a regular slot in the county calender.”
Zac Toumazi, of Sussex Cricket Club added, “We are thrilled to be taking cricket back to the Saffrons. We have been considering this over the last few years and we now feel the time is right to return.
“When it comes to outground cricket, we have to ensure that the venture is viable both logistically and financially.”
Councillor David Tutt, leader of Eastbourne Borough Council, added, “This is truly excellent news for the town. We have been working with Ian Fletcher-Price and the team at the Saffrons, Zac Toumazi and various other key stakeholders over many years to bring county cricket back to Eastbourne.
“Whether you are a fan of cricket or not, this is an exciting announcement and like many others I am looking forward to seeing Sussex playing Gloucestershire.”