Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Durham Wishing They Could Do Away with All the Travelling in Royal London Cup

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Durham Wishing They Could Do Away with All the Travelling in Royal London Cup

Article excerpt

Byline: Stuart Rayner Sports Writer stuart.rayner@ncjmedia.co.uk

JON Lewis has admitted some of his players did not know what had hit them before this week, but the Durham players do not think regionalising the Royal London Cup is the answer.

The Riversiders' horrendous programme continues with their final away game in the competition under floodlights at Glamorgan tonight.

They have already been to Somerset, Kent and Sussex. Their only games at Chester-le-Street will be condensed into five days, starting on Sunday.

Less than 17 hours after the scheduled completion of their match against Surrey, they are due at Old Trafford for the resumption of their County Championship programme.

Coach Lewis said: "This is the first of three games in five days.

"We have three home games in less than a week, starting on Sunday, and after the last of them, we have to get straight on a bus that night to head to Old Trafford for a County Championship game the next morning.

I don't think some of the players realised quite what was coming up until we laid it out for them before the Sussex game.

"There are lots of things that could help. Our four away games in the group are far from ideal.

"Yet nothing's going to change, it isn't easy."

Durham stayed over after Tuesday's disappointing floodlit defeat to Sussex.

It would have helped their stretched finances if they had not had to wait until today for the next match. Playing Sussex and Kent in succession would also have made much more sense.

This is the first year of the 50-over competition, which in Durham's case has been squeezed into 19 days. The format needs serious attention.

The ridiculous amount of time Durham have had to spend on the team bus has greatly added to their fatigue and therefore their risk of injury.

Some critics have suggested a regionalised format - as is the case in Twenty20 cricket - to cut down on the travel and the cost involved. …

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