By CONRAD SUTCLIFFE
THE Devon Women’s League is running a five-week Super Eights competition to give member clubs some competitive cricket.
With no prospect of salvaging the two-division format that usually operates in Devon on summer Sundays, league officials surveyed clubs asking what they would like?
Kirsty Hambley, the secretary of the Devon Women’s Cricket Association, said the feedback enabled officials to put together a workable tournament.
“People wanted it to be competitive and not just friendlies,” said Hambley.
“Hardly anyone said they could be sure of getting 11 players together for a team, but no one had a problem with eight, apart from Bradninch.
“Bradninch decided not to enter this year as they have players who are pregnant and also NHS workers and everyone understands their reasons.
“That left us with 12 teams that we have divided into three groups of four, who will play one-day festivals.
“Having eight a side and squads of nine got round the problem of keeping groups of players below 30.
“The games will be 16 overs each and each festival will be three games involving three of the four teams in a group. We are still working out who hosts whom, but are trying to move it round to generate revenue for as many clubs as possible.
“After four weeks there will be a top team and a runner-up in each division.
“The top teams will play in one festival for a champions cup and the runners-up will play for a plate.”
Hambley said finals day will be on Sunday, September 6. No venues have been finalised, although Exeter and Hatherleigh are top of the list.
DACO – the Devon Association of Cricket Officials – will supply tournament umpires and the league will supply match balls free of charge.
“We won’t be making a charge to enter either,” said Hambley.