Blackpool CC chairman unconcerned by Lancashire's new Farington facility

Blackpool CC chairman David Cresswell doesn’t anticipate that Lancashire Cricket’s new facility at Farington will adversely affect the prospect of Stanley Park hosting county matches.
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Work is underway on the 5,000-capacity venue which, it’s rumoured, may be in a position to host matches during the 2025 season.

It is thought that, when the new ground opens, it will stage up to six men’s T20 matches a year, a further two four-day fixtures for the county men’s team and six women’s games.

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It will boast two full-size cricket ovals, a two-storey pavilion and practice nets – and is also intended to support the development of youth, community and women’s cricket in the region, while also becoming a women’s centre of excellence for the North West.

Blackpool CC hosts five Lancashire Cricket matches in the 2024 season Picture: Daniel MartinoBlackpool CC hosts five Lancashire Cricket matches in the 2024 season Picture: Daniel Martino
Blackpool CC hosts five Lancashire Cricket matches in the 2024 season Picture: Daniel Martino
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Fylde coast cricketers find out 2024 fixtures

A second ground for the club was deemed necessary with Emirates Old Trafford hosting international cricket, elite Lancashire men’s and women’s fixtures and The Hundred.

The Red Rose are well served when it comes to alternative venues with Blackpool, Southport and Birkdale, Sedbergh School, Westhoughton, Northern, Liverpool and Sale hosting their various teams during the 2024 season.

Nevertheless, the Blackpool chairman remains bullish about the future prospects of Lancashire’s players returning to the Fylde coast.

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Cresswell said: “In the initial discussions we’ve had, it shouldn’t have any impact on the club.

“Having said that, the women’s matches will be played at Farington and the development games as well.

“There may be some first-team games there with Old Trafford being used for internationals, The Hundred, T20s and all the money-making games.

“However, while there will be potentially one or two games at Farington, it will still take it two or three years to bed in.

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“They won’t play on it this year and I don’t think they’ll play on it next year because it takes two years for the wicket to establish itself.”

The first of those will be the LV=Insurance County Championship game between the Red Rose and Durham, running from May 17-20.

A second consecutive Metro Bank One Day Cup match featuring Lancashire and Kent Spitfires will be on July 28.

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That comes after the Thunder women’s team makes two visits, starting with the Charlotte Edwards Cup game against the Sunrisers on June 9.

After that comes a Rachael Heyhoe Flint Trophy match which sees the South East Stars making the trip north again on July 7.

For good measure, Lancashire men’s second XI will also play a T20 game against Derbyshire on June 11.

It’s hoped Thunder’s pair of matches at Stanley Park can help attract a greater number of players to Blackpool’s burgeoning girls’ and women’s set-up.

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Cresswell added: “We’ve been successful in the women’s competition – and women’s cricket is thriving at international level and probably county level as well.

“In some cases, there’s almost like a consortium of players from various areas to make up teams.

“Our team is made up of players from the Fylde coast, so we do need to attract more players.

“If the Thunder team play here, it can only help us try and get more players in.”