FOLLOWING the ECB's announcement regarding the suspension of all recreational cricket activity, the Bradford Premier League has written to all clubs outlining its contingency plans during the coronavirus outbreak.

League chairman David Young has set out a three stage plan, which is being constantly evaluated in the light of the latest Government and ECB advice.

He said: "It is important that clubs know that our absolute priority is the health and welfare of everybody in the Bradford Premier League community, our players, officials, umpires, scorers, groundsmen, tea ladies, volunteers and supporters.

"These are unprecedented times and we appreciate the challenges facing our clubs. As a league, we will do all we can by putting in the hard work and planning that is going to be needed in the coming weeks."

Here is the text of David Young's letter sent to all clubs:

The strategy outlined is intended to be fluid and based on seeking to secure as much cricket as possible, but doing so on an informed basis, in a timely manner, with as much expert information to hand as possible.

It should be stressed that simply because we have, at present, outlined three stages, it does not mean each one will be implemented – indeed the exact structure of each stage is not set in stone and can be amended if circumstances allow.

For simplicity the current strategy is broken down into three stages as follows:

Stage 1

Cancellation of non-essential meetings/events in April including the pre-season meeting. This has now been activated and we will re arrange the pre-season clubs and match officials' meetings.

Stage 2

Postponing April’s fixtures and possibly moving them to later in the season. This stage would allow us time to see how things develop and place us in a position to make further informed decisions.

Stage 3

If we are unable to reinstate cricket during May/June it may be necessary to cancel the fixtures for the first half of the season and just play the second half.

This would effectively mean perhaps not playing until the beginning of July. If this became a reality, then we would have to consider if the competitions can be treated as competitive, with promotion and relegation implications.

If this stage was actioned then we may also have to make amendments to cup competitions. We realise there may be some clubs who would be unable to field all their teams.

That bridge will be crossed, in consultation with clubs, if we ever consider moving to this stage.

The advantage of invoking this stage would be that we buy some more time to assess the situation as we move through spring into summer, when the epidemic is now being forecast to peak.

We believe this plan is, hopefully, a helpful guide to our clubs. It would be the intention to try and keep you abreast of material developments, if and when they occur, including any further advice from the governing bodies.

During the last few days, board members have been contacted regarding advice in respect of overseas cricketers.

This is, again, a complex subject, not least the process to be followed when applying the timescales set out on the relevant visa e.g. collecting the Biometric Visa from the nominated post office within one month of arrival.

The advice just issued by the ECB is:

The Government advises UK citizens against non-essential travel anywhere in the world until further notice.

For any club with questions or concerns about currently contracted overseas players they should speak to the agent, their legal representative and their committee before deciding on the next course of action.

Unfortunately the decision and risk for the player travelling, not withstanding current Government travel restrictions, is the club’s responsibility.

As usual, Brian Pearson has agreed to provide, without prejudice, the best advice possible and can be contacted, by mobile, on 07867 780678.

While I realise there will be many unanswered questions arising from this guidance, we fully understand the concerns all our clubs have at the moment.

If there are any issues arising out of this briefing that require clarification, please contact the league secretary, who will collate questions and email responses to all clubs. Do this by email at please.