Wednesday, April 13th, 2016

Steve Rhodes Question And Answer Session

Steve Rhodes Question And Answer Session

Worcestershire Director Of Cricket Steve Rhodes gives his reaction and thoughts on the events of the last few days at New Road which meant no play was possible in the Specsavers County Championship clash with Kent.

Question: Was there any thoughts of changing the game to another ground?

Steve Rhodes: "No, not at all. We've practiced up at Kidderminster but everything was looking good for this game. We practiced here here out in the middle as well.

"Everything was all stations go. This is nothing to do with the river. Obviously we are next to a river and there is a water table that is incredibly high.

"That is what is affecting us at the moment, the absolute saturation of the whole surrounding area.

"Let's make sure we get things right here, when we practiced this ground was looking good, ready for Sunday.

"Sadly for us, it's done nothing but rain, we've had a lot of rain, overnight rain, and it has meant the water table is even higher.

"There was a time I felt and this is only my view, and my view means nothing because I don't make the decisions, but I felt there was a time after tea on the first day when we could have played.

"But it is all opinions, the umpires are paid to do their jobs and I still respect their decision. It was very much a 50-50 call anyway."

Question: After the floods here of 2007, new drains were put in here and have done a pretty good job?

Steve Rhodes: "I know it sounds crazy because we are sat here watching the sunshine and there is no cricket but I actually think, and I've experienced a lot of cricket grounds over the years, this is one of the best drying grounds in the country.

"People will be amazed I am saying that. We can't do anything about floods and things like that and certainly this heavy rain we've had over recent three or four days has been a nightmare for us and even this ground, with its wonderful drying conditions that it does have, can't put up with it at the moment.

"I live near Kidderminster myself and the roads are wet through, everywhere, so it's sadly a case of there is so much water has come down that the whole ground is saturated.

"This outfield wasn't wet. I know the internet says there was no play because of a wet outfield well it was wet initially on a wet day and in the afternoon it was dry.

"However, the umpires felt that it was unstable because of the amount of moisture that was in the soil and it wasn't safe and you've got to respect that as well. I had a different view.

"Sadly there is so much water in the soil that the ground is moving around."

Question: Will there be a proviso to move the Essex game somewhere else?

Steve Rhodes: "We always have that proviso but at the moment this ground drys quick. That is a long way away and we are certainly not going to go into it thinking we are only going to play here.

"Of course, we will have a Plan B but certainly at the moment it seems ridiculous to think we won't play cricket here in that match and I'll be amazed if we don't but strange things happen."

Question: Worcestershire-Kent games seem to have a history of not being completed?

Steve Rhodes: "That's just freak isn't it, that's just the way the fixtures unfold and it's just the way it is."

Question: Is it a bit early in the season to be playing at New Road?

Steve Rhodes: "I've been involved in professional cricket for 36 years so I'm reasonably well qualified to say that it does tend to have nicer weather at the end of September than early April.

"But having said that we've had some beautiful April weather, the sun has shone and we've seen some fantastic cricket. It is just freakish the amount of rain that has come down in the last week or two."