Budleigh cricket club is slowly returning to its pre-flood glory, but not without the odd set-back!

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The clean-up operation has been long and arduous and much work has gone into trying to get everything thoroughly dry.

As might be expected, when 15 feet of water hits your headquarters, it can raise issues which rear their ugly head long after you think everything is back as it was!

The club had hoped to have things up and running in time to re-open by the first weekend in August, but that was hit by continuous tripping out of the electric. Secretary Kevin Curran says: “So much hard work went into just trying to get things ship shape for people use the clubhouse again. Sadly, one thing we have discovered is the drying out process is going to need much more time. Clearly the wiring throughout needs longer to thoroughly dry out for we keep getting tripping out of the electricity. The last time we had such a serious flood it was ‘out of season ‘ and so we didn’t feel the effects as we have this time with it being the height of our season. The drying out process needs to go so much further than what the eye can see for the water, quite literally, got into every possible nook and cranny and even small amounts of damp that come to the surface are having a profound effect on the electrics. We had hoped to be back playing at Ottermouth before the end of our Francis Clark League campaign, but I fear that is just not going to be possible now and we are going to have go cap in hand to the University to see if we can extend the borrowing of their superb facility in Exeter.”

He continued: “Another huge issue is the wicket and the outfield which, as you would expect, took a real hammering from the flood water. Bizarrely we have even had to water the pitch on certain recent days, that a real necessity to help new seed grow and also to help the recovery process of both square and outfield. Hopefully, and this is said with everything crossed. We will be able to get some of our popular community league matches played before everything gets stored away for another close season. It has certainly been a campaign in 2012 that has put our resilience to the test!”

On Saturday both Budleigh 1st XI and 2nd XI go head-to-head with Bradninch sides. The senior teams meet ion Mid Devon in what looks a game now pivotal to Budleigh’s chances of beating the drop. A win at Kensham Park and they will be within touching distance of Bradninch. However, defeat and they will be left in what would then likely be a three-team battle to avoid the drop between themselves, Heathcoat and Sandford.

The 2nd XI entertain Bradninch II also in need of a win to boost their chances of avoiding dropping into the third tier of 2nd XI cricket next summer.

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