The ECB was grateful for the opportunity to discuss the deep impact of COVID-19 on sport with the DCMS Select Committee this morning.
As outlined by our Chief Executive Officer, Tom Harrison, the future of cricket is in danger, requiring a significant and collaborative effort to protect it.
In a worst-case scenario for which it is prudent to model, the cost of losing the entire cricket season is more than £380million of lost income.
From the outset of this crisis, we have emphasised our commitment to Inspiring Generations, our strategy to grow cricket between 2020-24. We continue to do all we can to deliver on this.
However, protecting the entire cricket network is our absolute priority, along with the safety of everyone in the cricket family. Once we know the full effect of COVID-19 on cricket, we will look to assess our plans to ensure we achieve a balance between cricket’s protection in the short-term and its ability to grow and reach new audiences in the longer term.
We remain in on-going dialogue with both the Government and Sport England and are grateful for their support in further understanding and mitigating against the impact of COVID-19 on cricket this summer.
This season, with the Government’s help, we hope to play some cricket behind closed doors when – and only when – it is safe to do so. Similarly, only when safe, we would also like to progress plans to explore how, as a non-contact sport, we can play some cricket at a recreational level.
We have already put a £61 million emergency package in place for the county and recreational game, as well as supporting clubs to access other funding options including Government schemes. We will continue to do all we can to protect our county and recreational clubs across the country and hope to receive Government guidance and support as we navigate this situation longer term.