Coronavirus: Somerset furlough players and staff

Jack Leach of Somerset celebrates taking the wicket of Essex batsman Daniel Lawrence in the last mat

Jack Leach of Somerset celebrates taking the wicket of Essex batsman Daniel Lawrence in the last match of the 2019 season (pic Nick Wood/TGS Photo) - Credit: Nick Wood/TGS Photo

Somerset have become the latest county to furlough players and staff due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The ECB, having already released funding to support counties this year, announced on Friday that the season would not start until July 1 at the earliest, pushing back its original May 28 start date.

And Somerset, who won the Royal London One-Day Cup in 2019 and finished runners-up in the County Championship to Essex, confirmed they have placed staff on the government’s job retention scheme.

Director of cricket Andy Hurry said: “I’ve been very impressed with the way the players have adapted.

“It wasn’t a shock to the players or coaching staff. I spoke to all the players to inform them they were being furloughed and they fully appreciated and understood the challengnig time we’re all facing.

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“Everybody supports the governing measures and the rational the club is taking.”

Hurry also said the club would support playing matches behind closed doors if that was seen as the only option to resume, while chief executive Gordon Hollins added the furlough situation is under constant review and is confident the club will survive the financial implications of the crisis.

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“Somerset CCC has been around since 1875, come through two World Wars and it will come through this,” he said.

“I’m absolutely convinced it will and my goal is for it come through it stronger, prosper and make a difference to cricket.

“We’re a club that is reliant on mass gatherings. The financial payment that was made by the ECB was invaluable for us.”

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