Derbyshire reiterate commitment to play cricket in Chesterfield

Queens Park pitch problems
Queens Park pitch problems

Derbyshire has reiterated its commitment to playing cricket at Chesterfield despite the abandonment of this year’s six day festival at Queen’s Park.

After the t20 Blast game and the County Championship match against Northamptonshire were called off without a ball bowled because of a saturated outfield, this Sunday’s 20-overs fixture with Yorkshire was switched to Derby.

It was the first time for 35 years that a Derbyshire championship match has been abandoned but although the club reluctantly decided to take this weekend’s game away from Queen’s Park, Chesterfield will continue to stage county cricket.

Derbyshire chief executive Simon Storey said: “We feel we’ve worked very closely with Chesterfield Borough Council and Chesterfield Cricket Club and we have a major sponsor in Custom Solar.

“When you look at the unprecedented rainfall and lack of sunshine - it’s supposedly one of the dullest and wettest summers since 1929 - this is an exceptional year and we remain committed to the partnership and bringing county cricket to Chesterfield.

“We have just signed a new five year agreement with Chesterfield Borough Council and we will continue to work with them to prepare for what is a big event for the town.

“The council, the club here at Chesterfield and Derbyshire County Cricket Club are all very committed to making sure county cricket returns to Queen’s Park. For us, it’s a jewel in the crown and will remain so.”

A sell-out 4,500 crowd had been expected for Sunday’s t20 Blast game but Storey insisted there was no alternative but to move the match to Derby.

“It was a very tough decision in the sense that we love coming to Chesterfield but ultimately we need to give the game the best possible chance of being played,” he said.

“Having consulted with the umpires and making calls both in terms of the current state of the pitch and looking forward we believe the best chance for the game is at Derby on Sunday.

“We are at an exciting stage of the t20 tournament and we have to put that high on the agenda. When we are going into the closing stages ,with both Derbyshire and Yorkshire looking to pick up the points, it was a decision we felt we had to make.

“It’s a big game for us and a big game for Yorkshire because we are all chasing points and we all want to get into the quarter finals. We were heading for a sell-out crowd at Chesterfield but there’s no reason to say the majority of spectators won’t now make the journey down to Derby to take in the game on Sunday.”