02498

Increased Competition fails to convince players
Friday 5th October 2007

After a cricket season in which both the run-scoring and the rainfall broke records, officials in the Business Assistance Liverpool Competition will soon begin the age old quest for reassurance by asking member clubs: “How was it for you ?”

They are likely to get a wide variety of responses. The bats and pads may have been put away until January but the talking looks set to last through the autumn as clubs consider the future structure of the league, the role of overseas professionals and more.

The size of the Premier League is likely to be near the top of the agenda. The elite was expanded to 14 clubs for the first time in 2007 and the change has few fans.

"I much preferred it the year before when we had twelve clubs in the Premier League," said Ormskirk captain Adam Waterhouse, "It was a weaker standard this year partly because Huyton and Leigh struggled, and then other clubs took their foot off the gas because they knew they weren’t going to be relegated."

Other captains agree that in 2007 the so called elite was no such thing. As a result, the idea of expanding the Liverpool Competition to as many as 36 clubs but placing them in three divisions of 12 is winning increased support especially when combined with the proposal to end all promotion and relegation between any 'third division' and other leagues.

Former MSCA side Wavertree are delighted with their first year in the Competition. "We haven't a bad word to say about it," said skipper Matt Nation, "We'd heard rumours about the standard of teams and players but we had no problems."

Carl Hey isn't complaining too much either. The Northern opener broke the league's 52 year old run scoring record and finished the summer with an aggregate of 1476 runs, 53 more than the previous record holder Dr John Winter. The two met up on the final Saturday. "I didn't think you'd do it," were Winter's first words to the 25 year old.