Following the Annual General Meeting of the England and Wales Cricket Board [ECB] – held today at Lord’s Cricket Ground – the following can be confirmed:

FINANCIAL

In 2016 ECB made the highest level of contributions to the cricket network and stakeholders in its 20-year history, with nearly £75 million invested in the professional and recreational game.

Overall group reserves were reduced to £35.7 million, reflecting this increased investment and the four-year business cycle of cricket linked to international series here and overseas.

ECB’s main areas of expenditure were: payments and contributions to the First Class Counties; recreational and grass-roots spend including a new entry-level participation scheme and investment in the Participation & Growth team; supporting England teams and talent pathways across men’s, women’s and disability cricket; and the ECB’s role in leading and supporting the growth of the game.

GOVERNANCE

It was confirmed that, in Autumn 2017, ECB Members are to be asked to approve a package of governance reforms, which will be both compliant with the Sport England Code and reflect best practice in sport.

Should these be agreed, changes to the structure of the ECB Board would be confirmed later this year.

MEDIA RIGHTS

ECB confirmed that it has appointed leading law firm CMS to advise on the media rights sale for all competitions for the period 2020-2024, helping to ensure the process meets the very highest standards of integrity, transparency and accountability.

An Invitation To Tender [ITT] for ECB media rights will be issued shortly and it is anticipated that the process will conclude this summer.

Further announcements will be made as appropriate, ahead of the process.

Colin Graves, ECB Chairman said: “Last year we invested more in our professional and recreational game than ever before.

“We must ensure the sustainability of the game at all levels, not only supporting existing clubs and competitions but creating new opportunities and investing further in the growth of the game.

“It’s also important that we meet the Sport England Code on governance. Our ambition is to reflect best practice in this area and to progress this over the summer.”

Tom Harrison, Chief Executive Officer of ECB, said of CMS’s role within the media rights process: “This summer ECB will conduct the sale of media rights for all our competitions, including home-based International matches, the current domestic competitions for both men and women and the New T20 competition.

“It’s critical that the process is right, meets the highest standards of integrity and helps the whole game to get the best outcome. The experience and expertise of CMS will support us in this.”