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ECB proposes 100-balls-a-side format for new domestic competition

The ECB hopes the new format will capture the imagination of a new generation of spectators.

A 100-balls-a-side format has been proposed for the new domestic competition which launches in 2020.

The England and Wales Cricket Board has announced the plan for the men’s and women’s tournaments, each featuring eight teams, due to start in two years’ time.

It had previously been thought that the competitions – due to involve cities rather than counties – would have a 20-over format. However, the ECB has now come up with a more radical proposal.

The board’s statement added that the competitions would take place in a five-week window in the middle of summer and that it would be “distinct” from the existing 20-over Vitality Blast tournament.

Under the proposal, each team will face 15 traditional six-ball overs with an additional 10-ball over at the end of the innings.

The plan was put to the chairmen and chief executives of the first-class counties and the MCC by the ECB on Thursday. It is hoped that the competition can rival the Indian Premier League and Australia’s Big Bash in terms of popularity.

ECB chief executive Tom Harrison said: “This is a fresh and exciting idea which will appeal to a younger audience and attract new fans to the game.

“Throughout its development, we have shown leadership, provided challenge and followed a process. We will continue to do that as the concept evolves.”

The organisation’s chief commercial officer Sanjay Patel, who will be managing director for the new competition, added: “This is 100-ball cricket, a simple approach to reach a new generation. Based on 15 traditional six-ball overs, the other 10 balls will add a fresh tactical dimension.

“Crucially, this will also help differentiate this competition from Vitality Blast and other T20 competitions worldwide, maintaining our game’s history of successful innovation.”

England bowler Stuart Broad told Sky Sports News: “I’m hugely optimistic, I love the fact that it’s different to all the other tournaments worldwide – 15 six-ball overs and then the pressure of a 10-ball over to finish.

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Stuart Broad has welcomed the proposed new 100-ball format

“I love the fact it’s got a slightly different unique selling point in there, a shorter game than T20, finishing at nine o’clock – perfect for children and families and a great night out.”

Asked how he would feel about bowling the final 10-ball over, he added: “I think I’d prefer the first set! You’re stepping into the unknown a little bit because that tactical side of the game hasn’t been used anywhere in the world.”

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