THE Thames Valley League have taken quick action to try to assist clubs who could face serious financial hardship with the sport now suspended due to Covid-19.

Secretary Matthew Stevenson said: "We are considering how to help our member clubs financially in these unprecedented times. We plan to use our bank surplus to waive this year's membership fees and/or subsidise the cost of this year’s balls."

The league's umpires meeting, scheduled for Sunday at Cookham Dean's Whyteladyes Lane clubhouse, has been cancelled.

The TVL, Home Counties Premier League and Berkshire League have postponed the start of their fixtures until further notice..

BERKSHIRE have called off their two pre-season friendlies.

The national champions were scheduled to play Wiltshire for the Marlborough Cup at Marlborough on April 12, followed a week later by Bedfordshire at North Maidenhead's Summerleaze ground.

Roy New, the Berkshire club's secretary, said he is awaiting further advice from the National Cricket Association regarding the T20 competition, the 50/50 KO Trophy and the four three-day Championship fixtures.

In the meantime, Gay Bradbury has volunteered to become Berkshire's new membership secretary, a role previously held by her late husband Paul before his death last year.

BERKSHIRE-BASED John Manners, who was the oldest-living first-class cricketer, has died at the age of 105.

He played occasionally for Hampshire from 1936 to 1948, but during that time he served as a Lieutenant Commander and was on the bridge of a destroyer which sank a German submarine in the closing weeks of the Second World War.

Following the war, he was appointed the naval liaison officer at Sandhurst Military Academy, while continuing his career with Hampshire. He went on to play for the Combined Services, for whom he scored a century against the New Zealand tourists, and the MCC.

Manners, who was well-known around the Hungerford area, died earlier this month at a nursing home in Newbury.

He was survived by three children, eight grandchildren and eight great-grandchildren.