Former England captain Michael Vaughan feels England and Wales Cricket Boar should consider shortening the County Championship this season along with scrapping of overseas recruits for the next two years to reduce costs in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic.
The ECB has already suspended all cricket activities till July 1 due to the coronavirus outbreak, which has infected more than three million people globally. The decision means nine rounds of County Championship fixtures is lost and if the season is scrapped completely, it will lead to a loss of £85 million for the counties.
“You have to look at every area where you can save a few quid,” Vaughan said on the Tuffers and Vaughan Show on BBC Radio 5 Live. “Traditionalists will go mad at this, but these are unprecedented times. In the next two years, could you look at not having overseas players for the four-day game?”
Many counties have cancelled the contracts of several overseas players, including Indian cricketers such as Cheteshwar Pujara and R Ashwin, in 2020. Vaughan, who captained England’s Test team between 2003 and 2008, suggested shortening the County Championship from 14 to 10 games.
“Four-day cricket costs the game...It is a cost to the game that could, just for a couple of years, be worth reducing,” said the 45-year-old, who captained England in 51 of his 82 Tests. “If you reduced it from 14 to 10 games, you’d miss the games but I don’t think it would be a huge problem for a couple of years. You could go back to that in two or three years.”