Damp squib

Editorin Cricket

kentKent chief executive Jamie Clifford has apologised to fans who suffered the near wash-out of the 100th Tunbridge Wells cricket week, but estimated the loss of revenue to his own franchise might exceed £50,000.

This follows the announcement that Tuesday's t20 game against Sussex was moved back to Canterbury - where it was also cancelled - because the outfield remained waterlogged.

A planned week of competitive cricket at the Nevill was basically reduced to one full day of play, no definitive results, and plenty of disappointment from all angles.

"I feel very sorry for all the supporters who were planning to watch a good week of cricket," said Clifford.

"But also Tunbridge Wells cricket club and the borough council, who worked so hard organising it all. When the storm came in, the pitch was waterlogged and we had no other option.

"The groundsman and his team had an important job and were very good. I've never seen players go on and off the field so often.

"We take insurance out on all the t20 games but the premiums are too high to insure every game.

"We expect up to 3,000 each day of the festival and smaller galleries, but obviously the crowds were much, much lower than that. If I had to put a round figure on it I would say around £50,000 has been lost.

"All in all it was a pretty ridiculous way to mark the 100th cricket week."

The wash-out simply added to the disruption already caused by the weather over the early part of the English domestic season. At the half-way point of the 2012 county championship, Kent lie in second, but six of their eight matches have ended in draws. One of those was played out against Hampshire on Saturday in Tunbridge Wells, where keen observers still attended in droves to savour the slithers of cricket on offer.

One spectator, John Bowerman, of Bexley, had put aside four days of his time to witness Kent at a setting closer to home.

"It's a shame about the weather but there's not much you can do - you can't legislate for this sort of rain in June. It's still been very good. The standard of county cricket has improved so much since the era I used to play in."

Article Sourced from the Kent and Sussex Courier

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