The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) on Tuesday announced a 61 million pounds package to overcome the financial stress in the country’s cricket caused by the global pandemic of COVID-19.
Also declaring that financial assistance will be provided to every level of the sport across the country, the ECB did not announce any immediate cut in players’ salaries.
“The plans detail a number of measures for the whole sport from elite to grassroots, including the MCC, the First-Class Counties (FCCs) and their County Cricket Boards (CCBs). Local cricket clubs will also be offered support to see them through the coming months,” the ECB said in an official statement.
“With revenues impacted across the game – from both cricket and non-cricket activities, the ECB Board today approved plans to expedite payments from a number of areas within its 2020-2021 planned distribution budgets,” the board added.
It was revealed that of the total sum, 40 million pounds will be immediately made available, while the other 21 million will come in the form of interest-free loans with a particular focus on ensuring that the game can survive at a recreational level.
“We understand these are challenging times and it has been our priority to provide swift and immediate support to all members of the cricket family at every level in England and Wales,” Tom Harrison, chief executive officer of the ECB, said.
Like in most parts of Europe, the COVID-19 pandemic has wreaked havoc in England as well with over 25,000 reported cases and more than 1700 fatalities. While the country remains under a 3-week lockdown, all forms of cricket there country have been suspended till May 28.