Ipswich Greyhounds Regiment cancels 47th annual tour
FOR the first time in 47 years Ipswich Greyhounds will not be setting off on their annual tour this weekend.
The Greyhounds, who are run on regimental lines, have been on manoeuvres in the south of England every year since 1965, but have had to cancel this year’s tour due to lack of numbers.
Over the years the Regiment have drawn their players from a number of local clubs including Browns/Ipswich, Copdock, East Bergholt and Frinton and Ipswich & East Suffolk, for a tour which used to feature seven matches in a week, including two at The Saffrons in Eastbourne.
The tourists had travelled as far as Dorset in the past, but for the last 20 years or so there have been five matches – one in Surrey and four in Kent. Around 30 playing and non-playing members usually tour each year.
Colonel Paul Crane said: “It is very sad. “Our core members have obviously grown older over the years, but we have continued to bring youngsters in to replace them as playing members.
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“However, we did not have enough people who were available this year due to injuries, unavailability and holidays and so we were left with no option other than to cancel the tour.
“This year’s tour fell on the same week as Frinton’s Cricket Week, which only happens once every four or five years, and that did not help.
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“We contacted the clubs concerned and we have had nice replies from them saying that they look forward to entertaining us if we can resurrect the tour next year.
“I hope that this is not the end of the Greyhounds annual tour. We will have a meeting in the winter and see where we go from here.”
As a result the Greyhounds have only one fixture this summer – at Mistley CC during their Cricket Week on Monday, August 14.
Crane said: “We used to play Halstead Seniors, but Halstead switched their Cricket Week to the week after our annual tour, so availability became a problem for us, and East Bergholt don’t run their own Cricket Week any more.
“And because of the PCA England Masters game and the Two Counties veterans 25th anniversary match at Ipswich CC this year, we do don’t have a fixture in the club’s Cricket Week.”