Norfolk League’s loan system is proving to be a big hit

Great Meltons George Bunn scored the first double century in the club's 44-year history at the weeke

Great Meltons George Bunn scored the first double century in the club's 44-year history at the weekend. Bunn carried his bat to make an unbeaten 203 against Acle on Sunday, hitting 18 fours and 10 sixes. Picture: CLUB - Credit: Archant

Player loans are generally associated with football - but here in Norfolk they are proving a useful tool for our national summer game as well.

The Norfolk Cricket League loan system is now in its third year, with its use becoming increasingly popular.

The idea is limit the number of games going down as walk-overs because a club is unable to raise a team and it certainly seems to be doing the trick.

The system was introduced with the support of the member clubs at the 2015 annual meeting and Tim Porter, secretary of the league sponsored by Ashburnham Solicitors, said: 'Players can transfer on a loan basis to assist clubs who are short of numbers for a given Saturday, up to a maximum of three players for a team, and only two from the same club. The players and clubs arrange the loans themselves, and then advise accordingly, and the loan must be sanctioned by the league to confirm eligibility and any issues such as potential team strengthening don't occur.'

With all the league's matches and player registrations now handled by, the system is easy for clubs and administrators alike to use.

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Chairman Ian Doy added: 'We are really pleased with the ongoing development and success of the loan system, being one of a number of positive initiatives and changes introduced into the NCL over the last five years. Fixtures that may otherwise have been conceded or played with a reduced number of participants have been fulfilled. With cricket facing a player attrition of seven percent annually across the country, initiatives such as player loans and our rain rules have enabled the NCL to buck the national trend of increasing cancellations'.

With the NCL's Facebook feed proving a useful tool there are around a dozen loans each weekend, with players having been loaned to teams in all four levels last weekend.

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Ian Parkin, NCL Discipline Officer commented: 'Even within our captain's reports, we get positive comments about the system, and it is definitely here to stay. Anything that increases participation has to be positive for local recreational cricket.'

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