ORANGE District Cricket Association president Mark Frecklington believes positive steps are being made to shore up the sustainability of cricket in Orange well into the future.
One of the goals of his and the ODCA executive, Frecklington believes the return of Waratahs and the strengthening of the Centenary Cup throughout 2013-14 is setting a solid foundation for cricket and the benefits will be seen in years to come.
“I guess that’s what we’ve been trying to do over the course of the last couple of years, strengthen the roots of the competition by keeping the kids in the game,” Frecklington said.
“By doing that hopefully we can strengthen cricket and make for some really good cricket through the grades in years to come.”
Crucial for the top flight, Frecklington also predicted all six first grade clubs - defending premiers Cavaliers, Centrals, Orange City, CYMS, Waratahs and Kinross - would be back again next season.
“As far as I know it’ll be the same six as we had last season,” he added.
It’s been three weeks since the dust settled on the 2013-14 season and already work has begun on next summer, with the ODCA asking players and officials to complete a survey on the issues surrounding the sport.
The official results are still being collated, but Frecklington said the findings will help the sport better cater to the wider community.
One of the larger talking points was format.
Last season one-day cricket was played prior to Christmas, with the two-day premiership resuming in January and played out until Cavaliers claimed a 65-run win over Orange City at Wade Park at the end of March.
At this stage, unless the overwhelming majority push for change, a similar format will again be contested.
The scheduling of Twenty20 cricket is also a point of conjecture.
“It is, it’s just a matter of how much we want,” Frecklington weighed in, wrapping up his fourth year as ODCA supremo.
“I think a little bit [of Twenty20] is the preferred amount. The survey said the preferred option at this stage is to have it during the Royal Hotel Cup, but that’s up for discussion.
“I think the year went reasonably well. I think [the 2013-14 format] was received fairly well by the competition.”
He said there was still room for Blayney and Molong in the Royal Hotel Cup.
“I think so. I’d like to see it at eight teams but if that means we miss out on Blayney or Molong then we’ll look at it.”