The 41 Members of the ECB have overwhelmingly approved - by a margin of 38 to three - a change to the Articles of Association. This will allow the introduction of a New Twenty20 competition in summer 2020, contested by eight new teams, to complement the existing domestic competitions including NatWest T20 Blast.
Those supporting the change include 15 First Class Counties, all 21 County Boards in non-First Class Counties, MCC and the Minor Counties Cricket Association.
Following the unanimous decision of the Board to send formal documents on 28 March, each ECB Member had 28 days to respond to the proposed change to Articles. The amendment required the support of 75 per cent – at least 31 of the 41 Members – to become effective. Deadline for receipt of documents was Tuesday 25 April.
This decision to seek the amendment to the Articles followed an extensive development period for a proposed new Twenty20 competition, featuring discussion and debate with the First Class Counties and wider game, regular updates from the T20 Development Team and detailed presentations by independent experts.
"We are delighted that such an overwhelming majority of our Members have voted to support the change to the ECB’s Articles."
Colin Graves, Chairman of the England & Wales Cricket Board, said:
“We are delighted that such an overwhelming majority of our Members have voted to support the change to the ECB’s Articles. In doing so, they have paved the way for an exciting new era for cricket in England and Wales.
“Over the past year our Members have seen the clear evidence outlining why an additional new T20 competition is the right way for cricket to reach new audiences, create new fans and drive the future of the game. I would like to sincerely thank them for the way they and their members have embraced the process and the debate.
“I passionately believe that the game has chosen the right path. Each of our Members will benefit and, critically, so will the whole game. We can now move on with building an exciting new competition for a new audience to complement our existing competitions - NatWest T20 Blast, Royal London One-Day Cup, the Specsavers County Championship and Kia Super League - plus the international formats, each with its own clear role to play.
"I passionately believe that the game has chosen the right path. Each of our Members will benefit and, critically, so will the whole game."
“Our clear ambition is that this new competition will sit alongside the IPL and Big Bash League as one of the world’s major cricket tournaments. It will certainly increase participation in our game, in conjunction with the new All Stars Cricket program for five to eight-year-olds, and provide additional income streams for all our stakeholders.
“The ECB Executive and T20 Development Team will now continue to work with the game as we build the new competition, ensure it is positioned distinctively from our existing competitions and realise its full potential. All decisions - including the creation and base of each team - will be made within the game, guided by our shared strategy and built on best practice, research and insight.
“The benefits it will bring can deliver a sustainable future for all 18 First Class Counties and an exciting future for the game in England and Wales.”