October 2009
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John Stern: Big Bob or Mystic Meg?

October 22nd, 2009 by John Stern in England, Twenty20


“The Olympic stadium should become our Twenty20 venue with £10 tickets … but that’s not going to happen.”

So said Bob Willis to TWC at the end of a textbook rant about Cardiff hosting the first Ashes Test and what he called “the regionalisation of Test cricket”. His Olympic comments sadly fell to the cutting room floor because of their tenuous relevance to the Ashes.

But now, it seems that Big Bob’s foresight might have been under-estimated. The ECB claim it’s the first they’ve heard of it so this all may come to nothing (just like all the other theories about the post-2012 usage of the Olympic stadium).

But we can hope. This is a top idea. And Willis is right – we don’t need dozens of venues that can hold 15,000 people. For big, limited-over games, we need a big stadium. The ideal would be a 50,000 one somewhere near Birmingham but the thought of 80,000 at the Olympic stadium watching a T20 match or indeed an India v Pakistan ODI is very appealing indeed. BRING IT ON!

John Stern is editor of The Wisden Cricketer

Posted in England, Twenty20 | 3 Comments »

3 Responses to “John Stern: Big Bob or Mystic Meg?”

  1.   GoodCricketWicket says:

    The ECB is lying - the idea was first mooted in 2005, and they were not interested.

    They are happy to continue milking less spectators for more money with scandalous ticket prices because it means that they can avoid upsetting the counties.

  2.   SixSixEight says:

    It’s just a shame the Olympic stadium wont actually host any T20 over the Olympics.

    And yeah to get a stadium of that size filled the price will have to be right - do you really trust the ECB on that one?

  3.   JimboNotts says:

    GoodCricketWicket is quite right, the ECB are being totally disingenuous here. Many people have suggested this over the last three or four years, and the Board have taken formal meetings to discuss it (see Buckland’s book for more on his costed plan and discussions with the GLA, ECB, ODA and others).

    The First Class Forum will never allow it though, so its not worth seriously discussing. If the counties lose control of hosting international cricket, eventually people will challenge their right to soak up its profits.

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