ECB annouce plans of an ‘imminent and safe return’ to recreational cricket

PUBLISHED: 17:00 02 July 2020

ECB target recreational cricket to return around the 4 July. Picture: Terry Ife.

ECB target recreational cricket to return around the 4 July. Picture: Terry Ife.

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The England and Wales Cricket Board have made plans of an “imminent and safe return” of recreational cricket around the weekend of the 4 July.

In response to the statement released by the ECB, prime minister Boris Johnson says he is concerned about the sport returning as the ball could carry the Coronavirus.

“The problem with cricket as everybody understands, that the ball is a natural vector of disease, potentially, at any rate and we’ve been round it many times with our scientific friends,” said Jonson.

“At the moment we’re still working on ways to make cricket more covid-secure, but we can’t change the guidance yet.”

However despite the PM’s concerns, the board still feel there can be some form of cricket being played this summer.

“The ECB along with the nation’s cricket players are keen to see the imminent and safe return of our sport at recreational level and have been working hard with Government to achieve this,” said the statement.

“We believe that cricket is a non-contact sport, with very low risks of exposure, and that it can be played as safely as many other activities being currently permitted.

“It is our strong desire to work with Government to see the return of recreational cricket on or around 4 July, as they continue to lift other restrictions more broadly across society.

“We are heartened that the Government has already permitted the return of other ball sports, including tennis and basketball, and we are sure that our interpretation of the risks around ball transmission is consistent with these other games.”

“We can confirm that any guidance we share with the game will include directions on how to mitigate any risk from handling the ball as we continue to prioritise the health and safety of the cricket family in all our decision-making.”

Weston head coach Sam Trego says he was encouraged with the ECB’s statement.

He said: “I feel it’s a really positive move from them and I’m hopeful now of some cricket to be played in the last two, three months of the summer.

“It may not be league cricket, due to how long we have left, but if we can arrange some competitive friendly games then I’m all for that.

“It’s really important that we build on last years World Cup success and not lose the young boys and girls that started enjoying the game.

“I’d also like to see some junior cricket to be part of all this,even if that’s inter club games. We can’t lose the youngsters out of our game.”


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