England and Wales Cricket Board suffers financial loss worth INR 143 crore due to COVID-19 havoc

England and Wales Cricket Board suffers financial loss worth INR 143 crore due to COVID-19 havoc

ECB’s cash reserves, for the time being, are only INR 19 crores.

England
England. (Photo Source: Twitter)

The England and Wales Cricket Board has recorded losses worth 16.1 million pounds, translating to nearly INR 143 crores, in the COVID-19 pandemic. From March 2020 onwards, the cricket world has been rocked due to the coronavirus and sanity is yet to prevail even after 12 months.

Amidst the grave global scenario, the ECB’s cash reserves have plummeted from over 70 million pounds in 2016 to 2.2 million pounds in 2021. It means that the ECB’s cash reserves, for the time being, are only INR 19 crores.

“This has been a challenging year, but by being able to stage international cricket and by taking decisive action early in the pandemic, we have been able to support the network and avoid a far worse financial scenario,” Scott Smith, chief financial officer at the ECB, was quoted as saying.

England board incurring hefty losses

“There remains considerable uncertainty over the year ahead, but we hope that delivering another full summer of cricket – and with crowds beginning to return from next week – we are able to protect the revenue we need to invest in growing our game,” he stated.

“This fall in revenue and profit reflects the significant impact that Covid-19 has had on ECB’s finances due largely to the postponement of ECB’s new competition, The Hundred, until 2021 and the additional costs of creating bio-secure environments to host international cricket in a pandemic environment,” he added.

It was back in July 2020 when cricket resumed amidst the pandemic. West Indies toured England followed by Pakistan, Ireland and Australia. The International Cricket Council also put forth a number of rules and guidelines for the resumption of cricket in the pandemic.

The bio-secure bubbles had to be set up, bearing in mind the safety of the cricketers in the pandemic. The matches were also played behind closed doors in front of empty stands keeping in mind how contagious the coronavirus can be.

As per ECB, the board bore the cost of the bio-bubbles and cricket, as a whole in England, accrued losses worth 100 million pounds. International cricket in England is set to resume with the World Test Championship final followed by the five-match Test series between India and the hosts.