The latest update to the Sussex Premier Cricket League restructure has caused a negative reaction from players around the county.
The story was published on our Sport Sussex Facebook page and it attracted negative comments from players across the Sussex, West Sussex and East Sussex Leagues.
We reported in March how the league was reducing it’s current eight divisions to six for the 2017 season.
The restructure will see first and second XI teams facing each other (but not from the same club), and a mixture of timed and limited overs cricket.
Teams would be ranked after promotion and relegation at the end of the 2016 season.
George Martin commented on the page: “The league has never been the same since they went from 20 clubs in two divisions. Journeys of two hours plus to play a fourth tier game is nothing short of ridiculous. I’d go back to simply Prem and Div 2 and then have a very strong East and West Sussex leagues.”
Hugh Warmisham, from Burgess Hill Cricket Club, commented: “ I agree with the proposal to make one ladder of 1st and 2nd teams. I also agree that beyond the very highest tiers we don’t want to be travelling over an hour for a game of cricket so I also agree it needs to be regionalised at a certain level.
“What I don’t agree with is the arbitrary way they want to chop the lower 2nd XI teams out of the SCL and place them in the ESL and WSICL. There must be a better way of working it out. If our 2nds finish 4th this year we’ll be pushed back 4 years. Four consecutive promotions needed just to reach the same position we are now (one Div below SCL Div 2).”
Matt Charman, also from Burgess Hill, commented: “This did not go to a vote it was just done by the SCL. Divs 3 East and West are already competitive and there is no need to do this, no ECB guidelines or directive to.
“The people who have designed this are not from clubs this affects and therefore the process is flawed and unfair. As an example you win Div 3 this year you stay in the SCL - you come second by a point you effectively go down three leagues. That is not providing more competitive cricket. All you do is enable the bigger clubs to have two teams in the SCL and improve their chances of succeeding - and damage all the other clubs who have spent thousands improving their facilities and grounds to imposed SCL standards.
“They should have made it eight free flowing leagues and let competitive sport sort promotion and relegation like it should and does up and down the country in all sport - that’s why we play sport - to compete and find our level.
“There would be benefits to this restructure if they kept it at eight divisions.”
Rob Sharma, from Mayfield Cricket Club, said: “So many good clubs in both East and West, why not stay in those categories until the very top league like it used to be?”
In response to these comments, the Sussex Premier Cricket League said: “The League has nothing more to say. The document is very clear. We can see the bigger picture and the benefits of re-structuring for all.”
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