CRICKET in Dorset has been tucked under one umbrella with an amalgamation of the five major branches of the sport in the county.

Authorities in the county have for the last 15 months been in talks to merge all cricket under the new Cricket Dorset entity.

Coming into the Cricket Dorset family are Dorset County Cricket Club, Dorset Disability Cricket Club, Dorset Dolphins Visually Impaired Cricket Club and Dorset 50+ Cricket Club.

Cricket Dorset will continue to trade under the Dorset Cricket Board name as the county moves to a single management structure.

Tom Snape fills the chairman role at Cricket Dorset and will oversee strategic control of cricket operations within the county.

Cricket Dorset’s headquarters remain in the centre of Blandford and managing director Ben Skipworth insisted the move marks an “exciting time” for Dorset cricket.

He said: “It is an exciting time to be involved in Dorset Cricket, with all representative cricket now seamlessly joining the existing operations that were running under the Dorset Cricket Board banner.”

“The new structure will see players start in the county under-10s, potentially play for the men’s first team and then represent the county again for the Dorset Seniors (formerly the Dorset 50+ teams) representative side,” he added.

“The same will be the case for a disability cricketer, who could start in our Super One hubs in the county and then go on to represent Dorset in national competition.

“The talks in relation to the amalgamation started in December 2021 and 15 months later we are in the position to announce the completion of this work.

“We are excited about the professional staff being able to learn from and utilise the skills and experience of all those involved in the running of the previously separate organisations.”

The new 2023 Wessex Internet Dorset Cricket League begins on Saturday, April 29.