Saturday, 4 June 2016

Is this T20 cricket?

The Jessop Tavern is sufficiently enthused about the current form of the Shire that they decided it would be childish to bitch and moan about the T20 Blast in match reports of us winning and looking good. So instead we will do it here.

Our thoughts on the T20 Blast have been fairly well known for sometime. We acknowledge that until city franchises are created the competition will never really take-off, but why oh why do the ECB seem to be so determined to do everything they can to make the competition as unattractive as possible. Thursday night cricket? If this were a TV game it might make sense. But nope. You have Brendan McCullum, one of the games biggest stars making his first appearance. Nothing. What about having England one day captain. Doesn't make a difference.

It might be a little bit of weak argument to complain about the weather, but given that both Gloucestershire's recent games were played in the cold and damp, and with the umpires wearing gloves, you have to wonder why we are playing these games at the start of the summer. The Jessop Tavern is well aware that July or August hardly guarantees good weather but at least in these months you could say you are just unlucky if it is a bad summer for the weather.

And so from T20 cricket Gloucestershire now see-saw back and forth between the T20 Blast and the Royal London Cup for the rest of June. That excellent championship form goes out of the window. That is fair enough. Ring fencing periods so that teams can solely play another format is absolutely fine. But why mix and match the two competitions? In the space of two weeks Glos will play Middlesex and Glamorgan twice. Once each in the T20 and once each in the Royal London Cup. Bizarre. Why coulnd't we just have one competition at a time? Allow that competition to conclude, and then stage the next one day competition later in the summer. Bang that T20 Blast tournament out in three weeks. Allow counties to have their big stars play the whole competition.

The Jessop Tavern was contemplating a trip to London and looked up some Surrey fixtures for when they are down in the big smoke. Great. A Friday night game against Somerset. Some Friday beers and some Gayle force lessons in chatting up women. Nope. Gayle won't be playing for Somerset at that point.  he is only contracted for 6 matches before he jets off to the Caribbean where the sun will definitely be shining on the Caribbean Premier League.

The Caribbean Premier League, by the way, has 6 franchises and runs for a smidge over a month. End of June till the first week of August. That means the IPL ends at the tail end of May, leaving a month in June before the CPL begins. Or alternatively, and preferably, the whole of August for the T20 Blast to position itself.

The Jessop tavern is pretty sure that it isn't actually that easy to redraw the T20 Blast competition. However, it would be nice to feel like something is being done instead of having championship matches lead into T20 then leading into Royal London cup fixtures. Oh, and no more Thursday night matches unless they fulfil part of a structured fixture list. Please.

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