Will Shropshire’s weekly look at what’s happened at Sudbury CC

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A FULL range of defeats on Saturday just goes to show one swallow doesn’t make a summer, and one win certainly doesn’t fulfil a season as the joy of the previous week was washed clean away. Disappointment doesn’t taste nearly as good.

On the plus side, Hasantha Fernando has now arrived and is settling in to life in Sudbury, his first tester a juicy derby against Bury with the northerners coming out on top, followed by defeat to Mildenhall on Sunday.

Who knows, maybe the players relaxed a bit too much with a Sri Lankan international on board, but after last weekend no-one at the club was in any doubt that there is no time for complacency.

If there was any such complacency it would no doubt be pushed out if we could see everything that goes into preparing for a weekend of cricket.

I went for a last-minute net on Friday, and seeing Andy Dodds and David Oakes at the ground got me thinking about everything that happens so that we can play cricket.

It starts way back with a Tuesday evening practice, followed by the selection committee who chew over the teams for quite some time.

Meanwhile throughout the week the groundstaff busily water, cut, roll, cut and roll the pitch again. In fact it is rare not to see one of them on the ground at any point over the summer months.

Thursday offers a chance for another practice, maybe a chance for the players to work on particular points of their game before Saturday morning when things get really busy.

The groundsmen mark out the pitch and give it a final once over, the cleaner spruces up the pavilion and the Henny Swan is busily preparing the luncheons.

The coaches set out some warm-up drills before the players, umpires and scorers arrive. The umpires check the ground, the scorers get the computer and scoreboard ready, and as the players go for a warm-up and for Premier League cricket it is still only 10am.

If someone was to watch all this they would be exhausted before the game had even begun, and it should makes us players appreciate the huge volume of effort it takes, even more so now with the time-demanding Premier League.

It takes a rather large slice of energy by the volunteers and club members to play in the top flight of amateur cricket, and it is something the club is very proud to be doing, but it isn’t without a great sacrifice from many unseen heroes who make sure that things are tip-top, on time and at the ready for when the players walk out onto the pitch hoping to become heroes themselves.