Local friendlies are most practical for Ross County
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Ross County cricket captain Graeme Carney says it was a deliberate choice to arrange friendlies against the sides based closest to them.
Castle Leod in Strathpeffer is due to see it’s first match action of 2020 tomorrow as last year’s Senior League champions Highland travel from Inverness, weather permitting.
County had been in contact with Highland – as well as Northern Counties and Nairn – throughout lockdown to discuss the feasibility of playing matches if and when permission was granted by Cricket Scotland.
Carney says it is no coincidence that the teams who had been in discussions were the ones based closest to each other, saying it made the most sense for players who could be travelling from all over the region to take some part in the fixtures.
“There was an element of that in mind, because if we’re not going to be playing a full 45-over game then there’s no point in travelling huge distances if we can play someone on our doorstep,” Carney reasoned.
“That’s a lot easier, and I think a lot of the clubs will be like-minded in that respect with a limited number of weekends left to play in.
“We will try and keep it as close to home as possible, we’ve got quite a big catchment area of players.
“We would have people coming a long way, and playing a shorter format may not be as appealing.
“We haven’t had those discussions while Covid has been going on with clubs from further afield, so when we got the green light naturally we spoke to the clubs that we had been in contact with throughout and said let’s get something in the diary.”
Shortened formats are just one way to make it easier to get games in throughout the remaining weekends of the summer.
Other rule changes will be implemented on a match-by-match basis as they are agreed between the teams involved.
“The rules have been slightly adapted,” Carney added.
“How many overs bowlers can bowl will be different in each game, and some clubs want batsmen limits forcing them to retire at 50.”