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    The ECB is seeking private investment in eight teams for The Hundred, rather than the entire tournament
The ECB is seeking private investment in eight teams for The Hundred, rather than the entire tournament
The ECB is seeking private investment in eight teams. Source: BBC

The ECB is seeking private investment in eight teams for The Hundred, rather than the entire tournament

The chief executive of the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB), Richard Gould, has stated that the ECB is beginning to seek private investment for The Hundred teams.

The Hundred is a 100-ball tournament that was launched in 2021 and is currently financed by the ECB, with funding distributed to the associated counties.

Gould has indicated that talks have resulted in the search for investment at the team level rather than in the tournament itself.

Private investment in cricket has increased, with Indian Premier League team owners investing in teams in South Africa, the United States, and the United Arab Emirates.

The ECB has also invested £100,000 in salaries for women's cricket in 2024. Players in both the men's and women's games earn significantly less than in franchise tournaments in India, making it challenging to attract the world's best overseas players.

The ECB created The Hundred to attract a more diverse audience and fit into shorter broadcast slots.

In 2023, a record 580,000 fans attended matches, with 41% of tickets sold to families and 30% to women.

However, traditional cricket fans have criticized the tournament for its representation of some of the 18 counties.

The eight hundred sides comprise combined counties, such as Yorkshire and Durham at Northern Superchargers. However, others face lengthy journeys. Fans of Somerset and Gloucestershire have Cardiff-based Welsh Fire as their nearest side.

Asked if there was a danger that the investment at the team level would make it harder for money to trickle down and make teams feel more marginalised, Gould said he did not think so.

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