A NEW cricket league for under-17 teams could be taking place on Sunday afternoons in Herefordshire next summer.

The format would be 35 or 40 overs-a-side matches and in line with national targets of trying to halt the drop-out of players aged between 16 and 24.

Herefordshire Cricket’s Edd Oliver said the proposal could fill a void left by the Herefordshire Under-15 League reducing to Twenty20 matches.

Oliver said: “If enough clubs are interested in this proposal then I will try to ensure that every team has between five and eight matches, either in a county-wide league, or north and south divisions with a county final between the two divisional winners at the end of the season.”

He added: “As well as offering under-16 and 17 players a chance to continue playing junior cricket for another season or two, the league would give the best under-15 and under-14 players exposure to a higher standard of junior cricket.”

There may be issues around player availability when children take their GCSE exams, but fixtures could be moved away from the exam period.”

Oliver said matches in next season’s Herefordshire Under-15 League would be played in a Twenty20 format on Monday nights.

All clubs interested in joining the proposed Herefordshire Under-17 League, can call Edd Oliver on (01432) 275189 or 07812 385337; or email: Edd.Oliver@ecb.co.uk