Cardiff gets nod to host T20 team

Western Mail - - SPORT -

CARDIFF’S Swalec Sta­dium has been cho­sen as one of the venues to host a new eight-team Twenty20 tour­na­ment, sched­uled to be­gin in 2020.

Southamp­ton, Birm­ing­ham, Leeds, Lon­don, Manch­ester, the Welsh cap­i­tal and Not­ting­ham have been se­lected as host cities for the com­pe­ti­tion.

Both Lord’s and The Oval will host newly cre­ated teams in the com­pe­ti­tion with the Ageas Bowl, Edg­bas­ton, Head­in­g­ley, Old Traf­ford, the Swalec Sta­dium and Trent Bridge the other grounds cho­sen.

The as-yet un­named tour­na­ment is planned to run for an ini­tial five years from 2020 and be played along­side the ex­ist­ing T20 Blast.

The eight venues an­nounced yes­ter­day will all have new teams cre­ated around them with two in Lon­don.

“We are hugely ex­cited by the prospect of host­ing one of the teams in the new Twenty20 com­pe­ti­tion which starts in 2020,” said Ageas Bowl chief ex­ec­u­tive of­fi­cer David Mann.

“It is set to trans­form do­mes­tic cricket in Eng­land and Wales, and we also rel­ish the op­por­tu­nity to present reg­u­lar in­ter­na­tional and first-class cricket op­tions to all our com­mu­ni­ties across the South of Eng­land.”

Mean­while Glam­or­gan lim­ited-overs cap­tain Colin In­gram said it would be a boost for Wales to be al­lo­cated a fran­chise in the new com­pe­ti­tion ear­lier this week.

“For Cardiff to get one of those fran­chises or city-based teams would be mas­sive for Wales,” In­gram ex­plained.

“Peo­ple out in Aus­tralia think they have re­ju­ve­nated cricket in Aus­tralia,” he said.

“It (Big Bash) is a world-class com­pe­ti­tion.

“I know the peo­ple in the UK and I know they love their cricket and have been sup­port­ing their coun­ties over a good many years.

“But cre­at­ing more ex­cite­ment can only bol­ster the county cricket sys­tem in gen­eral.

“It will be great to be a part of [and] hope­fully Cardiff will get a team.”

Mean­while he 2023 Ashes Tests have been awarded to the same five grounds as the 2019 edi­tion, the Eng­land and Wales Cricket Board has con­firmed.

Edg­bas­ton, Head­in­g­ley, The Oval, Lord’s and Old Traf­ford will all host Eng­land v Aus­tralia matches in both se­ries.

■ Ben Stokes will re­turn to the Eng­land squad in New Zealand to­mor­row af­ter plead­ing not guilty to af­fray at Bris­tol Mag­is­trates’ Court.

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