I’ve really missed cricket. The most I’ve played in the last 2 months is lobbing a soft ball at my brother in the garden and a few keepie-uppies with my bat now and again. The ever‑warming weather makes me sad when Saturday comes around – I want to be out on the cricket field with the sun shining on me, running in to bowl and waiting nervously for my turn to bat! Sadly, it doesn’t seem there will be any chance of me doing that here in England until August.
So the sudden explosion of life back into European cricket has lifted my spirits. In the last few days cricket has been livestreamed from Guernsey and Finland, and organised cricket has returned in Norway, Estonia and Poland. Being able to watch bat versus ball again is so satisfying!
But there’s one tournament on the horizon that has really caught my eye and that is the ECN Czech Super Series – starting on June 15th in Prague, so much about this competetion has grabbed my attention!
Matches on Weekends
This sounds obvious but having matches on Saturdays and Sundays should means that many more of us can tune and watch. It means the cricket can have my full attention, rather than just checking the scores every now and again between meetings or having a livestream on mute in the background whilst I work!
First Broadcast Cricket from the Czech Republic
What an incredible milestone for European cricket. It’s the first time cricket will be broadcast from the Czech Republic and not only will the whole tournament get the excellent coverage provided by the ECN and be available worldwide, but with the slow return of cricket elsewhere, the tournament will be in the spotlight of just about everyone! Having a broadcast will be brilliant for the status of the game in the Central European nation and will provide a visual reference for the sport for the whole country, as well as a goal for those in the expansive Czech junior programmes.
It’s great to have cricket back on the ECN too, after the unfortunate cancellation of the ECL and no editions of the European Cricket Series since March. Having the whole tournament – all 10 days and 40 games of live T10 action during daylight hours in Europe – makes for a great return.
All the Czech Teams are in Action
How good is it that we will get to see all 16 of the cricket teams in the Czech Republic in action? It means we’ll get to see nearly every active player in the country! What an opportunity then for these players to showcase their skills to the whole world through the ECN’s global livestreams!
The names of the teams are just excellent as well. Often naming new teams is tricky – it’s hard to find names that are dramatic and unique – but with their rich history, the Czech clubs make it look easy. Names like Prague CC Vandals, Prague CC Visigoths or Brno Raiders really tie into the medieval history of the Central European nation.
This tournament has got a really unique and exciting design. With the 16 teams split into 4 groups of 4, each group has a round-robin, playing three games each. There’s then an eliminator playoff between the 2nd and 3rd place teams, before with playoff winner takes on the league winner in the final. Each overall winner then qualifies for the finals weekend, which runs in the same format.
With each group taking up one weekend each, every team and player will get their turn in the spotlight and the high-stakes playoffs – with just one space in the finals per group – will mean every game counts.
Less than two weeks to go! I’m counting down the days!