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ECB plan gets county backing

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David Collier

David Collier © Getty Images

A five-year financial strategy presented by the ECB chief executive David Collier has been warmly welcomed in Loughborough, by the first-class county chairmen.

The strategy is based on an objective assessment of the game's finances conducted by KPMG and was unanimously endorsed by the ECB board in December.

The plan invests in excess of £20m in all areas of cricket with community clubs, Chance to Shine, women's cricket, ground drainage, permanent floodlights, coaching and facilities at all levels of the game being the main beneficiaries.

The meeting on January 23 regretted the issuance of a report circulated by Neil Davidson, the Leicestershire chairman, prior to discussion with the county chairmen.

There are several inaccuracies in Davidson’s paper concerning the decision making process in respect of two division cricket, performance related fee payments and team salary payments.

These were all decisions taken by the first-class forum and not, as suggested by Davidson, by the ECB board.

All of these decisions taken by the first-class forum were incorporated into cricket’s strategic plan, Building Partnerships.

Davidson chose to ignore in his press release, issued immediately prior to a scheduled meeting, that KPMG had independently reviewed and concluded in 2007 that the international grounds did not obtain financial benefit after taking into account facility and operating costs from international matches.

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Giles Clarke, chairman of the ECB, said: “I am delighted by the reception that the financial strategy received from all counties and also from the Recreational Assembly who received the plan shortly before Christmas.

“It is an investment plan which benefits the whole game and is based on valid and objective data produced independently by KPMG.

"The meeting noted that the finances of the game had been managed extremely successfully since the introduction of Building Partnerships.

“Our financial performance is two years ahead of plan and the chief executive led and presented a holistic plan which demonstrated the benefit of our strategy.

“It was deeply regrettable that Davidson saw fit to release a paper which contained factual inaccuracies on the day prior meeting with all the county chairmen and ignored the findings of the KPMG report.

“The excellent five-year plan, which has been discussed by the board over the past 12 months and approved in December, was unanimously endorsed by all counties present.”

Notes:

The decision concerning two division cricket was taken by the First-class Forum in December 1998.

Team salary payments were rejected by the First-class Forum on 10 October 2002.

Performance related fee payments were approved by the First-class Forum on 13 October 2004.

In respect of the assertion in Davidson’s paper that only £1.6m was available for general distribution from £40m, the KPMG report provides no substance to those assertions.

The review concluded "excluding overheads and financial costs the average Test match generates a total contribution of about £1.5m for the club".

"On the same basis the average one-day international generates an average total contribution of £240k.

"The additional costs incurred by the clubs hosting international matches offset the contribution generated by the matches."