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Re: 3 conference County Championship
Posted by: Hants01
Date: 21/01/2018 11:42
Personally, my view on Conferences could be definitively settled by finding out whether Rod Bransgrove is in favour or not. If he is favour, I would oppose the idea; if he is opposed, then I would support the idea. Generally, it's a good thing to find out what his view is, because in my opinion he is usually wrong.

There are some very attractive merits of Conferences. I do not want to go down the football route whereby the better players in county cricket (those who bother to play here and don't decamp to an Indian circus) are concentrated at a few rich counties. We know- Leicester being the fluke of all flukes- that the Premiership in football is the six plus fourteen league, with the vast majority of sides just making up the numbers. County cricket must be better than that. It can't be right that counties like Gloucestershire and Leicestershire, who have produced England players (more than my own at Bransgrove's) are permanently entrenched in the Second Division. And what if they have effectively given up on red ball cricket? That's dangerous. We must not have Warwwickshire, Notts and Surrey winning everything by dint of the chequebook.

If the proposed reform ends up with an extra game, that is one in the eye to the Graves and Bransgroves of this cricket world who want to put the emphasis on franchise rubbish here.

I think Championship cricket does need reform. Personally I would now sling out the overseas players, or confine them to a Second Division. Middlesex once had Haynes and Daniel, my own county Greenidge and Marshall. Now they are mostly second or third raters, novices or those coming to the end of their careers (er...George Bailey for example!). I have no problem with the Indian circus gobbling up world-class players who may well have spent summers in England building up an affinity with a county. But let's not saddle ourselves with what for the most is rubbish. Of course there are the Surreys and somersets whop have rolled out the red carpet to young Australians who can return with the skills and knowledge acquired to beat us.

The counties need to come together and remember their enemies are, in my view the ECB, that never wastes a moment, humiliating and downgrading county cricket, whether it's the proposed franchises, supporting the IPL rather than the CC, taking players from counties during the summer to face tourists, having the season opener in the Middle East, or whatever. The counties do need to end divide and rule and probably Conferences in the best way. It can't be right that counties like Yorkshire and Middlesex who produce so many England players are then relegated or relegation-threatened for their efforts.

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