Mitchell Cricket Council chair Mark Frecklington admits finding the right balance between too much cricket and not enough means the representative calendar is always a work in progress.
But he thinks re-formatting the Mitchell Twenty20 Cup into a carnival, to be run at Orange’s Jack Brabham Park on Sunday, January 27, is a winner.
The Mitchell Twenty20 tournament has previously been run over multiple weekends and was initially scheduled that way for this summer, too, but with four teams in 2019, and an already jam-packed schedule at both a rep and association level, Frecklington floated the idea of running the council’s senior bash-and-dash competition at the one venue, on the one day.
“And everyone seemed pretty keen on the idea,” he said.
Frecklington is also the Orange District Cricket Association president and the Western Zone chair and says ensuring rep cricket is still an attractive format for players to take part in is something he’s “conscious of”.
“I don’t think it’s about reducing the amount of cricket being played but there has been a fair bit of rep cricket and if there’s ways we can save some travelling and some costs and still get a result then it’s definitely worth looking at,” he added.
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Frecklington highlighted the success of the Western Zone Colts carnival in Orange in late 2018 as a perfect example of a successful representative competition.
The zone under-18 competition was run over a Saturday-Sunday carnival.
“I think (carnivals are) definitely something we could do more of next year,” he said.
Four teams will contest the 2019 Mitchell Twenty20 Cup at Orange’s Jack Brabham Park on January 27.
Orange takes on Bathurst while Lithgow will play the Blue Mountains.
Both winners will then go on and face-off in a final, with a third-place play-off also scheduled.
Bathurst go in as the defending champs.
Frecklington said there was initial interest from Mudgee and Gulgong to take part in the competition but those additions didn’t come to fruition.