Monday, 29 June 2009
ECB announce three competition structure
As the npower Ashes Series heads to Leeds via Birmingham the ECB have announced a three competition structure for domestic cricket from 2010 designed to protect the primacy of Test and 4-day cricket.
The LV County Championship will remain as a 16 match two division competition while the enhanced Twenty20 - P20 - will be played in June and July with a finals day later in the season and there will be a limited overs Sunday afternoon competition.
Giles Clarke, the ECB chairman, said: "We canvassed a wide range of opinion and everyone was behind the principle of the primacy of Test match and County Championship cricket. It is important that the County Championship structure is maintained to support the England Test team. We all recognise that there is little appetite for Test match cricket in early May and this structure allows us to play Tests in June, July and August."
"We have also listened to the spectators and counties alike," Clarke continued, "about the structure and the consensus was for Twenty20 cricket to be played in June and July with a final later in the season with the qualification matches primarily at weekends."
The enhanced Twenty20 competition will be based on two pools of nine which will be split on north-south lines. This means that the competition retains the local derby element which is so successful at the moment. The matches will be played on Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sundays in the main.
The ECB Board has still to decide on the playing regulations for the competition although there will be no restrictions on the number of overseas players who can be registered.However there will be a restriction, yet to be decided, on the numbers who can play in each competition.
The third competition will see a return of the much loved Sunday League but the exact format is yet to be confirmed but importantly spectators will be provided with regular cricket from 2010.
The ECB is committed to 50-over cricket at international level with a total of 13 ODIs against Bangladesh, Australia and Pakistan as well as an extended programme of England Lions 50-over games. These matches, along with those played in Australia in the winter of 2010/11, will provide the practice required for the ICC World Cup in early 2011.
The Board have referred their decisions back to the ECB cricket committee so that the schedule, rules and regulations can be drawn up as a matter of urgency.
Unicorns v Yorkshire Vikings - YB40 (Chesterfield) Unicorns won the toss and elected to bat
189/9 (40 overs) Pyrah 8-0-34-3, Rashid 8-0-27-2, Patterson 8-0-35-2, Sidebottom 8-0-37-1, Plunkett 8-0-45-0.
Vikings 190-5 (38.5 overs) Lyth 58* Ballance 44 Vikings win by 5 wickets.
Vikings win by 5 wickets