THE prospect of a wet summer is a further problem Manning Cricket officials may have to contend with, with the 2021/22 season scheduled to start tomorrow.
Five teams will contest the Manning tier 1 competition, with 10 in tier II. Three games will be played pre-Christmas, while there will only be 10 in total in tier I and nine in tier II.
There'll be more free weekends for tier I teams because of the bye, even if there's no problems with the weather.
Now the prospect of washed out matches on Saturday and beyond will further complicate matters.
"We're supposed to play Wingham at Chatham Park, but I don't think there's much chance of that,'' United veteran Ricky Campbell said.
"And the way the grounds are after this rain, I can't see the games being transferred to synthetic wickets.''
Gloucester captain Harry Clarke said there's been 'plenty of rain' in the Avon Valley. The Bushmen are drawn to meet Great Lakes at Gloucester tomorrow.
Campbell added there's no simple solution to the problem if, as forecast, the rain continues.
"It's supposed to rain into next week so that would put next weekend's games in doubt,'' Campbell said.
A further washout on December 10 would allow just one match before the Christmas break, providing the weather clears.
"And we have the bye (on December 18), so we wouldn't get a game at all before Christmas,'' Campbell pointed out.
However, he is against extending the season further into March - the tier I grand final is scheduled for Saturday, March 12 - to counter lost fixtures.
MidCoast Council has also directed summer sports to be finished by March so fields can be prepared for winter.
"We're already coming back a week earlier than usual after Christmas - on January 8,'' he pointed out.
"I know a lot of players don't like games on Sundays, but maybe the association could schedule some T20 games on a couple of Sundays to make for the lost games.''
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