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Sussex swim to safety

Sussex won the key relegation clash with Worcestershire by an innings and 63 runs. We dominated the game from start to finish with Luke Wright a double centurion. We did not get off to the best of starts when captan Ed Joyce was injured in the warm up amd Chris Nash took over as skipper. On a  flat wicket we took 20 wickets. It was hard cricket but the Sussex team publically congratulated Joe Clarke, a nineteen year old to watch for the future, when the Worcestershire batsman scored an elegant century. We now go above Somerset whom we play next. It was our first victory since May. We began the season with 3 wins and it looks like we will finish strongly too.

The ECB reported after a couple of days of meeting with county chairmen and chief executives. They seem to have come up with a consensus that will only please the players who, all agreed, have too onerous a schedule. They recommend a 28 day window in which T20 will be played. This will be played on different days which will not please the money men as the bar takings on the Friday night are immense. Andrew Strauss wants to see an improvement to our white ball competitiveness. Personally I think with the Ashes victory and that we played well in the limited over format against World Cup finalists New Zealand, English cricket is in good shape not requiring yet more change. For those of us who follow the county game we are not enthused by a possible 8-county first division and trust me it won’t be long before those 8 comprise the test match counties. We are definitely going the way of football with all its financial imperatives and lack of concern for the real fan who has been priced out.

Let me tell you the story  of Spen Cama. He was the son of a wealthy Indian carpet trader who came to England and married a Welsh nurse. He died before Spen was born. Spen qualified as a barrister but never practised. He came to Brighton where he bought up property in auction. He founded the Nomads cricket club in Preston Park an affluent suburb of Brighton. When he died he left his estate partially to the Nomads and partially to Sussex where he became  chairman. The Nomads decided they did not require such a large bequest and agreed to vary the will to make Sussex  the richer beneficiary. By the time all this was resolved the estate had so increased in value Sussex received £16m. They could have sold off Hove and moved to a new bowl out of town as Hampshire did but used the money to improve the ground with a new pavilion and stand. With a capacity of 6,000 it’s perfect for both white and red ball matches as well as smaller international competition such as the Ladies Ashes which was a sell out. The committee was sensitive to our county traditions and we had a decade of success winning the championship three times. In 2007 Sussex won the championship and Brighton the play offs. This is a short clip celebrating both to the rousing tune of Sussex by the Sea. I fear  for the future of cricket if the ECB do not show similar sensitivity by putting  money before tradition.




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About Ivan Conway

Ivan Conway will be reporting on Sussex sport. He is a member of the 1901 club at Brighton HAFC, Sussex County Cricket Club and an enthusiastic horse race goer. After selling his freight forwarding and conference business he settled in Hove. His other interests are bird watching, brass rubbing and bridge. More Posts