Townsville Cricket counts cost of record wet sea­son

Townsville Bulletin - - Bizfi Nd - by Antony Ste­wart antony. ste­wart@ townsville­bul­letin. com. au

SOME overnight mercy from the rain gods should en­sure lo­cal cricket re­sumes for the first time in two weeks to­day.

Two of the three games – Wan­der­ers v Sub­ur­ban Parks and Wests v Brothers – will al­most cer­tainly go ahead, while a de­ci­sion on the SaintsNorths clash at En­deav­our will be made at 10am.

It’s a po­ten­tial rare ray of light in an other­wise rain-hit cam­paign.

But what­ever hap­pens, it ap­pears too late for Townsville Cricket, who are count­ing the cost of the record wet sea­son.

Townsville Cricket pres­i­dent Peter Raf­fles re­vealed yes­ter­day that the con­tin­u­ous del­uge over the past cou­ple of months would cost the as­so­ci­a­tion over $ 20,000 on field up­grades re­quired on their En­deav­our fields.

‘‘ It’s just been a re­ally wet sea­son – we’ve been try­ing our best to get it back up to speed,’’ he said.

‘‘ We’ve busted our bums to get ( to­day’s cricket) on.’’

Un­for­tu­nately, though,

that

it

has also proven a large part of the rea­son why the off-sea­son will be so costly.

To get the En­deav­our fields even close to playable, ride-on mow­ers have had to slash the grass to al­low the sur­face to dry which, in the process, has com­pacted the ground and in­flicted dam­age in need of re­pair.

As Raf­fles pointed out, how­ever, if the fields were left un­cut, they would not dry and re­pairs would still be nec­es­sary.

About a third of the sea­son’s clashes have been im­pacted on or aban­doned due to the rains.

On the field, to­day’s matches will be played as one-day games af­ter day one last week was washed out.

It means Wests, who were al­ways go­ing to be at ex­tremely long odds of los­ing top spot in the fi­nal round, will fin­ish the sea­son as mi­nor premiers and qual­ify first through to the April 2 grand fi­nal.

Their op­po­nents, Brothers, mean­while, more than eight points be­hind Sub­ur­ban Parks have no chance of forc­ing their way into the fi­nals spots, leav­ing Subs and sec­ond­placed Saints to play­off for the other berth in the de­cider next week.

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