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Bay skipper boycotts East v West match

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Stephen Outerbridge has rejected an offer to play in today's 'Clash of the Counties' because of the impasse between the Eastern Counties Cricket Association (ECCA) and St. David's.

The Bailey's Bay all-rounder had been chosen to lead a star-studded Eastern Counties XI against a Western Counties XI at Sea Breeze Oval.

But instead he has refused to be a part of what he views as a “cover up” to conceal the more pressing issues surrounding the dispute between the ECCA and the Islanders.

“I think this whole thing is a mess and I am not playing in someone else's make up game to cover it up and think it's cool. I'm not covering up nobody's mess because this is just not good enough,” he told The Royal Gazette.

“I don't see why St. David's or the Eastern Counties cannot apologise and then move on. But it seems as though everything keeps getting swept under the door and nobody wants to do anything about it.”

The ECCA and St. David's have been locked in a bitter row that has resulted with the latter boycotting the Eastern Counties competition for the past two years.

The Islanders have lost all faith in the ECCA as a “fair” and “unbiased” governing body, and strongly resent having disciplinary sanctions imposed on them by the association for their protest, sanctions they deem as “unconstitutional” and “without jurisdiction”.

St David's absence has limited the Eastern Counties competition to just two rounds, something that doesn't sit well with Outerbridge.

“People don't want to see an East versus West All Star match, they want to see Bailey's Bay play St David's. I'll bet you ten times as many people would come out if Bay was playing St David's.”

Bay beat cup holders Cleveland County and then defended the showpiece against Flatts in the Islanders' absence earlier this summer.

Yet while Outerbridge is happy to see the cup return to Sea Breeze Oval, he admits he still has doubts whether Bay are the “true champions”.

“I have to hear from people that we are not the true champions and to be truthful I don't feel like I am a true champion of the Eastern Counties. I grew up wanting to win Eastern Counties and I still feel I haven't done it.

“Yes, it felt to good to win. But in the back of your mind you 're saying 'we haven't beat St. David's or beaten the champions when they had the cup'. St. David's wanted a challenge and I accepted it, but that dream has been taken away from me.”

Outerbridge refuses to play even though the ECCA has agreed to pay its players $50 to play, something he finds baffling.

“Why is it that for the one hundred -years that we have been playing the players have not been paid? You are going to offer them $50 dollars for this make up game but in your own Eastern Counties you don't give them a cent. It just doesn't make any sense to me.”

While Outerbridge is out of the Eastern County side, the Western County lost their bowling attack yesterday when Malachi Jones and George O'Brien were banned by the Bermuda Cricket Board.

The Willow Cuts pair were punished for their parts in an incident during Cuts' defeat at the hands of Devonshire Rec last weekend.

Under the BCB's new approach to issuing suspensions Jones and O'Brien were given dates when they would be eligable to play again, not a number of matches they must miss.

Jones has been banned until Sunday, September 11, when Cuts take on Southampton Rangers, while O'Brien can return a week earlier for the game against Devonshire Rec.

The bans rule both out of today's county clash and tomorrow's Twenty20 game against Flatts.

Today's 55 over match gets underway at 10am and will feature unlimited bowling and no fielding restrictions.

Boycott: Stephen Outerbridge
Stephen Outerbridge
East vs West teams

Eastern County XI: Terryn Fray, Rodney Trott, Lateef Trott, Dennico Hollis, Glenn Blakeney, Allan Douglas II, Dennis Mussen, Damali Bell, Regino Smith, Kijuan Frank, Kevin Hurdle, Logan Phillips, Kyoshi Trott.

Western County XI: Deunte Darrell, Ryan Sheppard, Khiry Furbert, Jason Anderson, Deonte Wellman, Sean Riley, Noel Woods, Shonari Boyles-Simons, Benjamin James, Cameron Gordon.

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Published August 27, 2011 at 8:00 am (Updated August 26, 2011 at 10:09 pm)

Bay skipper boycotts East v West match

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