England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) chairman Giles Clarke dismissed on Tuesday talk of a city franchise system being introduced for domestic Twenty20 cricket.
Clarke, speaking at the ECB’s annual general meeting at Lord’s, said fan loyalty was an important part of all sport in Britain and would have to be a factor in any attempts to emulate a new domestic league in India.
“Franchise sport has simply never worked in the UK,” he said.
“Tradition and history rather than Bollywood stars and glitz are the binding which persuade supporters to return week in, week out to our grounds — whether it is rugby, football or cricket,” the former Somerset chairman said.
“There has never yet been a successful Team London in any sport and nor is there likely to be any support for a Team Manchester or Team Leeds from traditional areas of rivalry such as Liverpool or Sheffield,” he said.
“When ECB launched their own Twenty20 Cup it was on the back of extensive spectator research and financial analysis, Clarke said.
“This is an exercise we will repeat before launching any new competition because we have said this tournament must be robust, spectator friendly and economically sustainable,” Clarke said.
The ECB have been in talks with Texan billionaire Allen Stanford, who already bankrolls an innovative Twenty20 competition in the West Indies, about how the US businessman might fund a new event in England.
Clarke said recent developments in India had been based on the model created by the ECB, which pioneered Twenty20 as a professional cricket format.
“Now the challenge for all of us is to continue investing in the marketing and presentation of the Twenty20 Cup to ensure it remains a brand leader for domestic competitions,” Clarke said.
“People talked of an Indian event based on city franchises but these were not city franchises as we know them other than in the greatcities of India such as Mumbai, Kolkata, Delhi and Chennai,” he said.
“This was not the picture of city franchise sport as those looking from afar might assume,” Clarke said. “Indeed all those involved wished there was a hundred years of tradition on which to build these fledgling brands.”
“I thank Sir Allen for his interest in cricket in England and Wales and most of all I thank him for believing that the ECB is the right vehicle through which to expand his patronage in cricket,” he said.
“I hope to give more details in the days and weeks ahead but I can guarantee that everyone in the game — from playground to Test arena — will benefit from this deal,” Clarke said.
‘CRIMINAL ACT’: The UCI said it ‘strongly condemns’ Dylan Groenewegen’s ‘dangerous behavior,’ which left Jakobsen in critical condition and injured other cyclists Dutch cyclist Fabio Jakobsen was in a coma on Wednesday, in “serious” condition, after he was thrown into and over a barrier at 80kph in the conclusion to the opening stage of the Tour de Pologne. Footage showed 23-year-old Jakobsen, of the Deceuninck-Quick-Step, racing elbow-to-elbow with fellow Dutchman Dylan Groenewegen of Jumbo-Visma as both men frantically tussled in a tight sprint to the line in Katowice. However, Jakobsen came off worst, somersaulting over the barriers before colliding with a photographer after Groenewegen had veered suddenly to the right, squeezing his rival into the security wall. “His condition is very serious. His life is
The NBA said was re-evaluating its training program in China following allegations of abuse of young players by local staff and harassment of foreign staffers at a facility in Xinjiang. The comments come after a report by ESPN that quoted unnamed American coaches as saying that Chinese coaches hit young players. One American coach who worked at a camp in Xinjiang complained of harassment by local police, the sports network said. “The allegations in the ESPN article are disturbing,” NBA deputy commissioner Mark Tatum said in an e-mail statement on Thursday. “We ended our involvement with the basketball academy in Xinjiang in June
Taiwan Steel on Sunday grabbed three points with a narrow 1-0 win against Hang Yuan FC, to move into the No. 2 spot on the Taiwan Football Premier League (TFPL) log, while Taipower FC beat NTUS 2-0 to maintain first place. Taking advantage early in the match of opposition defenders who had not yet settled down, Taiwan Steel’s attacking trio of Wu Chun-ching, Marc Fenelus from the Turks and Caicos Islands, and Benchy Astama from Haiti pushed forward with good passes. After only one minute of play, Fenelus dribbled from the right flank, feeding a short pass inside the penalty area to
LEAVING IT LATE: Rakuten added late runs last night to add to wins on Wednesday against the Brothers and the Lions on Friday that went down to the last batter The Rakuten Monkeys rallied to post three late runs for another close win, prevailing 5-3 over the Uni-President Lions yesterday as Taiwan’s second-half CPBL season got started with lower scoring output, but exciting finishes. It was Rakuten’s third win in a row. In two games this week, they seized victory in dramatic fashion with their last at-bat and have drawn level with the CTBC Brothers on top of the table after yesterday’s results, 0.5 games in front of the Fubon Guardians and 1.5 games ahead of the Lions. It was tied at 1-1 early, with Rakuten hosting the Lions at the Taoyuan Intenational