More sports gear up for their return

Cricket is set to return next month and football could follow soon after following government guidance on recreational sport.

More sports are set to return and the South Lincolnshire and Borders Cricket League says it’s currently talking to clubs about a proposed league that would start on Saturday, August 1.

Cricket clubs can now play games as long as social distancing measures are observed and the league are understood to have been sent the provisional fixtures for how a depleted season can be played.

And they could be joined by football with Spalding United manager Lewis Thorogood saying pre-season friendlies could start from early August.

A statement from the FA released last week said: “We welcome the announcement and publication of the Government’s return to recreational sport framework which means we can look forward to the safe return of competitive grassroots football.

“We are now working to submit a comprehensive action plan and related guidance for Government approval as outlined in DCMS’s publication. Once approved, we will publish new guidance for the grassroots football community.

“We will confirm timings as soon as we are able. In the meantime, competitive grassroots football can prepare to return and look forward to the start of the new season.

“Please continue to refer to the latest guidance documents for adult players, coaches, facility operators, parents and carers involved in re-starting grassroots football activity which came into effect from July 4 until a further update is provided, in addition to the latest Government guidance on COVID-19.

“Please also note that guidance is being developed for clubs with teams competing in the National League System (NLS) and will be shared with those clubs directly in due course.”

Leagues are working with the FA who are working with the government in a bid to also see how many fans might be allowed into games while staying socially distant.

Thorogood is on the advisory panel of the Northern Premier League which is considering when football can return.

In a video on the club’s Facebook page he said the club had made changes in and around the Sir Halley Stewart in the hope they can get games on as soon as possible.

He said: “We want to get back playing as quickly as possible but also as safely as possible.

“We need to do things correctly but I want us to be a step ahead.

“We have the provisional dates as to when we can start the season.

“We believe that pre-season friendlies will start from early August.

“Whether that’s with crowds or not, we’re yet to find out. The FA will tell us and we’ll hear within the next week to ten days. I’m going to make sure Spalding United is one step ahead of the rest of the clubs in our league.”

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