Staffordshire and Shropshire have their last big payday from the Cheltenham & Gloucester Trophy today following the England & Wales Cricket Board's decision to axe minor counties from the competition next year.
Not only will the event lose an element of romance, but the implications extend further as Staffordshire take on Surrey at Leek and Shropshire face Shane Warne's Hampshire at Whitchurch.
"The implications are quite deep," said Nick Archer, chairman of Staffordshire County Cricket Club. "These games raise something like £10,000, which is about a quarter of our annual income.
"We get a fee for qualifying to this level of the C&G that's worth about £3,000. That goes a long way to meeting some of our expenses but that money is taken away completely next year. How can we sell Staffs v Bedfordshire the same as Surrey?
"The simple answer is we can't. It's a massive blow but, aside from the financial implications, it also denies
the spectators and the players the chance to watch or play against top international players at our home ground."
The ECB have even slashed the minor counties' annual grant by ten per cent to £18,000 each, a shortfall which Staffordshire may be forced to meet through costcutting or seeking more sponsorship.
The first-class counties, meanwhile, who will play a group phase-style competition from next year that guarantees them more matches and subsequently more revenue, receive £1.35 million each, every year from the ECB.
Such a payment has led the players' union to question the counties spending on lower-level overseas players who still command sizeable wages.
The ECB has tried to address this issue by announcing a reward structure whereby counties will receive more money for producing more home-grown England players. The age-old scenario, though, where the rich get richer would seem to apply here.
"I have no doubt that the 18 first-class county chairmen couldn't care less about us as long as they are looked after themselves," said Shropshire's honorary secretary Neville Birch, who has performed the task for 21 years. "The ECB have got it all wrong."
"Playing the big counties in the C&G means everything to the people locally. We'll have Shane Warne and Kevin Pietersen at Whitchurch this week and it's sad to think these days will be no longer."
Hampshire coach Tim Tremlett said the ECB's decision to omit minor counties from the competition surprised him.
"It's a shame," Tremlett said. "Going back to the days of the Gillette Cup, the competition has always been the FA Cup of cricket, which gives the lesser counties an opportunity to play against the top sides at home and get a good gate and make some money."
The ECB understand the ill-feeling but there's no going back.
"A lot of people will be upset," ECB cricket operations manager Alan Fordham said, "but times change."