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Cricket clubs win struggle as 50-overs league restored to two rounds

Bermuda Cricket Board president Lloyd Smith revealed reversal of decision (File photograph supplied)

The Bermuda Cricket Board has reversed its controversial decision to reduce the 50 overs leagues to only one round of matches this season.

BCB president Lloyd Smith confirmed that the competition has been restored to two rounds following a meeting with affiliated clubs on Tuesday.

“There is going to be two rounds of 50 overs,” Smith told The Royal Gazette.

“How it is actually set up I can’t tell you until the cricket committee can actually put a schedule together to make it work, but there will be two rounds of 50 overs and T20.”

The BCB came under fire from clubs who strongly opposed the decision to play a single round as they believed it limited players’ exposure to the longer version of the game and hindered the development of young talent.

St George’s coach Clay Smith publicly expressed his displeasure over the format change on the eve of his team’s season opener against Cleveland at Wellington Oval.

“I am extremely displeased that the board has decided to only play one round of 50 overs after initially saying they will play two rounds of both 50 overs and T20,” he said.

“It is a disservice to the game of cricket to the development of cricket as a league title could be decided by five games of cricket.

“We saw the debacle last year that it caused when Cleveland had two rainout games destroy their league chances but because there was only one round last year they fell short and ended up finishing third.

“All we, and when I say we, I like to think I can speak for all cricketers, would like to do is play more of the longer version of cricket.

BCB president Smith dismissed claims the reason for shortening the 50 overs competition was to prevent the season from running into October and infringing on the start of the football season, with many of the grounds used for both sports.

“That’s incorrect how the situation came about when it was presented to the clubs,” he said.

There are no 50 overs matches scheduled for this weekend due to the Bermuda Smash Invitational, which started at North Field, National Sports Centre, on Wednesday and runs until Sunday.

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Published May 16, 2024 at 7:57 am (Updated May 16, 2024 at 7:57 am)

Cricket clubs win struggle as 50-overs league restored to two rounds

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