Friday, July 19, 2024
12.8 C


My Account

- Advertisement -

Rain’s the name of the game

Wairarapa sports organisers are struggling to recall a wetter summer sports season.

The 2022-23 season has created havoc with countless cancellations, disruptions and rescheduling of fixtures, with cricket the worst off.

Wairarapa Cricket general manager Simon Roseingrave reckoned there hasn’t been a season like it in the nine years he has been in the role.

“We’d be getting up to 50 per cent of our weekends being affected, and normally we’d get away with two or three out of 20 [about 10-15 per cent], but we’ve been unlucky, and it’s horrendous. I feel sorry for our cricketers,” Roseingrave said.

“It doesn’t create a good experience in terms of juniors wanting to play the game if they’re never out there playing, and it’s frustrating, but we’re not in a position to extend the season because we don’t want to encroach on the winter codes, so the last weekend will be March 25-26.”

Roseingrave said that it is not only the weekend cricket that has been impacted but the midweek junior competitions on Tuesdays and Wednesdays, as well as the senior T20 competitions on Thursdays and Fridays.

Wairarapa Cricket community and pathways manager Nathan Elliott has been working hard to rearrange games, including the T20 semifinals. However, the poor weather and the availability of suitable pitches have created a logistical nightmare.

“Ground preparation has been non-existent, so there have been some underprepared pitches and long grass. It’s just been an average, average season, and when the sun is shining, it’s all about trying to recover from the rain as opposed to actually be out there playing because pitches are saturated and outfields are long and wet.”

The premier men’s Bidwill Cup final was the major club fixture affected, with only 12 overs possible before rain intervened, handing victory to top qualifiers Burger King Red Star.

Surprisingly, given the regularity of the rain, the senior men’s and women’s representative campaigns were relatively unaffected.

The Central Districts’ men’s Chapple Cup one-day tournament was changed to T20 and reduced to two days because of Cyclone Gabrielle and the Southey Sayer Wairarapa Korus lost only one game after being unable to fly to Nelson.

Age group rep fixtures were more affected, with several games cancelled.

“We lost a lot games on Sunday, where it’s been so wet on the Saturday, it’s been too wet to play on Sunday, and I reckon at times 50-60 per cent of our fixtures have been affected, which is ridiculous,” Roseingrave said.

The Giants softballers are used to weather affecting the Wellington-Hutt Valley-based Intercity championships, but the Giants Blue premier two and the Giants Red premier three teams will feel even more shortchanged with the current season.

Both teams have played only eight games in the 14 weeks of championship play, with three washed-out games, two byes, and a default win apiece.

Wairarapa Tennis senior interclub coordinator Matt Spooner said the wet summer had a huge impact, even though many regional one fixtures can be rescheduled.

“It’s created a huge logjam of catch-ups. Getting 12 players to the same venue is difficult, and only Opaki have good lights for midweek games,” Spooner said.

He added that he didn’t play a home game for his Carterton team in the pre-Christmas interclub because of the weather.

The club also hadn’t played a fixture in the Gawith Shield interclub championship on the day it was scheduled, with even the recent fixture against Martinborough delayed a day to allow the grass courts to dry sufficiently.

Bowls Wairarapa have fared better than other codes, with tournaments able to be moved to artificial greens at the Masterton and Carterton clubs.

The representative quadrangular tournament, involving teams from Wairarapa, Wellington, Kapiti Coast, and the host Manawatu association, was abandoned, impacting on the buildups for future representative tournaments.

On the club scene, the McKerrow Trophy for 1-10 year mixed pairs and the Wally Brown Shield midweek triples had rounds postponed and rescheduled.

Bowls Wairarapa executive officer Warren Fisher is hoping for better fortune for this weekend’s Open Pairs at Masterton, with the women to play on the artificial green and the men on the natural green, with the Park Bowling Club artificial as the backup.

Fisher said probably the best indication of how bad the season has been is that the Masterton artificial green is being sprayed for mould because of the rain and lack of sun.

Chris Cogdale
Chris Cogdale
Chris “Coggie” Cogdale has extensive knowledge of sport in Wairarapa having covered it for more than 30 years, including radio for 28 years. He has been the sports guru at the Wairarapa Times-Age since 2019.

Related Articles

- Advertisement -
broken clouds
12.8 ° C
13.8 °
12.8 °
68 %
69 %
14 °
12 °
14 °
10 °
10 °