Relegation could spell disaster for Sudbury

RELEGATION from the region’s top league could spell disaster for Sudbury Cricket Club.

Sudbury won promotion to the Gibbs Denley East Anglian Premier League in 2010 and finished seventh in their inaugural season last summer.

The club are nicely nestled in sixth spot this season and appear to have established themselves among East Anglia’s elite.

But chairman Roger Troughton is all too aware of the repercussions should Sudbury, who have played at their picturesque Friars Street ground since 1891, be relegated.

He said: “In two years’ time the East Anglian Premier League is changing its rules so that clubs must have a minimum distance of 50 yards from the centre of the pitch you are playing on to the boundary.

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“The distance is around 35-37 yards maximum at Sudbury, so if we were to be relegated at some stage, we would not be able to get back into the league as long as we are playing on our current ground, so we have to make sure we stay up!

“There is no way we will ever move off there unless the owners decide to sell the ground, and they will never do so under the articles of association.”

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The ground is owned by Sudbury Sports Ground Ltd, a limited company, of which both the cricket club and hockey club are shareholders, and it can only be used for community sports activities.

Acquiring a second ground is one of the club’s aims going forward, said Troughton, who is now in his tenth year as chairman.

“We want to stay here, but we want a second ground as well, although that is realistically five to ten years away.”

Chilton Woods, which is owned by Suffolk County Council, is earmarked for development by Redrow Homes, with part of the scheme including a cricket ground.

Sudbury would use the ground for junior coaching and matches and to play 2nd XI or 3rd XI fixtures, although it could be used by the 1st XI should the club need to.

Troughton, who is also chairman of Suffolk Cricket Board, said the club would also like to extend the current Friars Street pavilion, to include women’s/children’s changing rooms.

On the field Troughton said the club were keen to see their 2nd XI promoted from Division Three to Division One of the Marshall Hatchick Two Counties Championship to close the gap in standard for players moving between one side and the other.

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