Cricket Scotland launches Pro Series

Cricket Scotland yesterday launched a new Pro Series competition for 2013. The enhanced structure replaces the existing Regional Series and the sport’s governing body says the new format will help establish domestic professional cricket in Scotland and could in time lead to cross-border competitions.

The two new ‘Pro Teams’ will feature Scotland’s best players, including all 14 Scottish-based players who are centrally contracted by Cricket Scotland. Details of support staff and playing squads will be announced in the near future.

Over the course of the season the teams will play a series of matches against each other in all three formats, with the complete schedule shown below. The schedule includes a minimum of two three-day matches, five one-day games and three T20’s. This represents a significant enhancement on the previous regional series.

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Commenting on the new structure, Cricket Scotland performance director Andy Tennant said: “The establishment of the two new pro teams has two clear objectives – to further raise the standard of play at the highest level domestically, while also providing a sustainable platform for professional cricket in Scotland.

“It is no secret that we hope the Pro Series will grow into something bigger in future, with a potential cross border competition providing obvious benefits for all concerned.”

Chief executive Roddy Smith added: “While the establishment of the two new Pro Teams is crucial to our high performance aspirations, Cricket Scotland also remains totally committed to strengthening the regional infrastructure and supporting our league associations.

“Both the WDCU (Western District Cricket Union) and ESCA (East of Scotland Cricket Association) will field select teams against the touring Japanese national team this summer.

“In addition, and extending the now established Under 15 and Under 18 inter-regional tri-series tournaments, a new three-region tournament at senior level is hoped to be introduced in due course, the inter-regional concept being something that we are keen to develop to give the best club cricketers of all ages a representative outlet.”

The new Pro Series has benefited from financial support from the ICC TAPP (Targeted Assistance Performance Programme) Fund, and a further announcement will be made soon regarding cross-Border fixtures in both 2013 and 2014.

2013 PRO SERIES FIXTURES

Pro 50 Trophy: 28 April Highlanders v Reivers, Myreside; 8 May Reivers v Highlanders, Titwood; 22 May Reivers v Highlanders, New Williamfield; 23 June Highlanders v Reivers, Forthill; 18 August Highlanders v Reivers, Mannofield.

Pro Series: 28-30 July Highlanders v Reivers, Goldenacre; 20-22 August Reivers v Highlanders, New Williamfield. Mid Summer T20 Challenge: 27 June Reivers v Highlanders, Titwood. T20 Triple Header Day: 1 Sept Reivers v Highlanders v Cavaliers XI, Arbroath.