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03 Oct 16 15:28
Date Joined: 16 Jul 10
| Topic/replies: 3,915 | Blogger: flukes's blog
Seems to have come out of the blue; financial issues and they have accepted ECB rescue package, Riverside has also lost test status.
Pause Switch to Standard View Durham relegated and points deductions
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Report donny osmond October 3, 2016 3:41 PM BST
Durham have been relegated from the top flight of the County Championship, with Hampshire staying up in their place, after being hit with a penalty for receiving financial support from the ECB during the 2016 season. They will begin 2017 in Division Two with a 48-point penalty in return for a £3.8m bailout.

The club has accepted it will no longer be allowed to bid to host Test matches at Chester-le-Street, although they will be eligible for ODIs and T20 internationals. Durham will also start next season with -4 points in the NatWest T20 Blast and -2 points in the Royal London Cup; hand back non-player related ECB prize money for 2016; and be subject to a more closely controlled salary cap until 2020.

The financial aid package, which has been agreed between the ECB and Durham's board, is aimed at allowing the club to cover its operating costs, settle a proportion of outstanding debt and focus on restructuring.

"We've been working with Durham County Cricket Club throughout the year on how best to address their financial issues; we welcome the club's willingness to review its business model and management structures," Tom Harrison, the ECB's chief executive, said.

"There is no doubt that a strong, financially robust Durham has a vital role to play in developing England talent, enriching our domestic competitions and underpinning the wider growth of the game in the north east.

"The financial package and associated conditions approved by the ECB Board reflect the unprecedented seriousness of Durham's financial situation. To help them through these difficulties and continue as a first-class county, this had to be addressed with immediate, practical financial assistance. We also have a wider responsibility to the whole game and need strong deterrents in place to preserve the game's integrity and financial stability.

"Durham have made a strong contribution to the game as a first-class county, through domestic competitions, local participation and producing fine England players. We now look forward to working productively with the new Board of Directors in the restructured company and supporting a healthy future for Durham and the game in the north-east."
After enduring a troubled campaign on and off the field, Durham appeared to have secured their Division One status with back-to-back victories in their final two games of the season, over Surrey and Hampshire, who finished 45 points behind them in eighth place and were initially relegated alongside Nottinghamshire.

However, to retain their viability, Durham had to call upon assistance from the ECB - including an accelerated annual fee payment of £1.3m, as well as the rescheduling of their £923,000 staging fee for the second Test against Sri Lanka in May - to help service debts to the local council, believed to be in the region of £5-6 million.

The ECB spent the past week considering whether a sanction should be imposed. A points deduction was eventually deemed to be the only realistic option available to the board, given that a financial penalty would merely have exacerbated the club's issues.

"The Durham County Cricket Club Board welcomes the ECB's long-term commitment to safeguarding first-class cricket in the north-east," the club said in an official statement.

There is no suggestion of financial impropriety at Durham, and other Test-match grounds have accrued greater debts in the course of modernising their venues. However, the club's remote location has made it harder to diversify and generate the sort of revenues that keep their rivals solvent.

The club, which won the County Championship three times in six seasons between 2008 and 2013, has proven itself to be one of the most successful counties in terms of producing England players, with Ben Stokes and Mark Wood among the most recent examples. However, in a sign of potential struggles to come, they have lost two of their most influential batsmen of recent seasons, with Scott Borthwick and Mark Stoneman choosing to move to Surrey.

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

i heard debt wass 7.5 million and rising, a sad day.
Report Jack Hacksaw October 3, 2016 5:34 PM BST
I know nothing about this, but I wouldn't be too happy I was a Kent fan - finishing second in Division 2 and despite 3 teams getting relegated from Division 1 - still not getting a promotion.
Report saxon farm October 3, 2016 8:41 PM BST
Hampshire now remain in Div 1.
Report Jack Hacksaw October 4, 2016 11:02 AM BST
Yeah.  Hardly fair.  They have 2 down and only one up.  Then they send one more down, but rather than promote the team coming runner up - and under any normal season would be promoted, they save a team who should have been relegated!
Report geordie1956 October 4, 2016 2:41 PM BST
The rules were 2 down & 1 up - that is what has happened albeit incredibly sad for Durham but Hants benefit from the decision

I don't think Kent have any real argument
Report Injera October 4, 2016 4:21 PM BST
A great shame.

Quite why they had to be relegated AND penalised so much next year is beyond me. Once again sporting bodies keen to penalise the fans who have wasted time and money.

Why should any Durham fan bother to go next season?? The whole season is a write off. They've even penalised them in the 2 one day cups!

I would have prefered to see personal punishments against the administrators involved. Leave the players and fans out of it. That last day run chase to save their Div 1 status was incredible but all in vain.
Report wondersobright October 4, 2016 5:09 PM BST
kent haven't got a leg to stand on

it was always 2 down 1 up this ssn, durham suffered the points deduction meaning durham and notts were the 2 teams with the lowest number of points in div 1 hence they are relegated

hampshire have the 3rd lowest number of points and therefore they are not relegated

its quite simple

v sad for durham Sad
Report donny osmond October 4, 2016 5:31 PM BST
ecb could have bought stokes and wood from durham, but dont need to
as they get them free, taking them away from the fans, so less incentive
to watch. ( ok they pay their wages)

can you imagine man utd fans turning up to watch a team whilst
deprived of their internationals, whilst man utd bust a gut to identify
young talent and bring them through only to see them removed .....

i do think durham ( my team btw) deserve punishment for the incompetency
of their board, but the whole structure is set up to penalise success and not
to nurture a new fan base.

we county fans are getting older, do you want a thriving county scene, or
an array of sloggers imported from all over the place ?
Report Injera October 4, 2016 7:20 PM BST
They could have used other sanctions rather than make the whole of Durham's season null and void. Not to mention contriving Hants' ridiculous escape.

Ban on overseas for 2 years.
Ban on domestic signings for 1 year.
Fine them. (By relegating them it costs them money so why not fine them instead)

To use such an arbitary punishment is autocratic nonsense.

Dobell's article on cricinfo is worth a read.
Report donny osmond October 4, 2016 7:29 PM BST
got no money so a fine is a double punishment

a penalty of 48 points means its tough to gain promotion at one go
but not impossible

we didnt have an overseas pro last season, couldnt pay the wages
but used kolpaks etc previously as well as overseas pros.

i guess durham have sought alternative investment, so books must be dire.

i do like dobell,
Report DStyle October 5, 2016 7:42 AM BST
some very good stuff on the blogs out there, in particular the full toss.

essentially, durham's woes have in the large part, been brought about by being forced to bid for test matches, and being forced to build a massive ground. both at the behest of the ecb.
Report Injera October 5, 2016 4:54 PM BST
Excellent article DStyle. Good to read the comments afterwards too.

One word: vindictive.
Report fdsgfargaer October 5, 2016 11:50 PM BST
injera has it right. why punish twice. kills the fans
Report geordie1956 October 6, 2016 8:36 AM BST
the 48 points penalty should have been imposed for the current season just ended which would have meant relegation but to demote and  then impose 48 points onto next season means it is almost impossible to get promoted - there are only 14 games next season

the contracts signed by some players might well be invalid & they could be poached away by other counties although i certainly hope not

there has been some mismanagement but the players & supporters are the innocent parties who suffer the most from the decision

ecb certainly making an example of durham - would yorkshire or surrey suffer the same punishment?
Report Fermat October 6, 2016 11:00 AM BST
Anybody with any common sense could see that building an out of town Test match ground in an area which does not have great population centres was a mistake. Durham went along with it to get first class status but what were the ECB thinking?
Report donny osmond October 6, 2016 4:58 PM BST
chester le street is within 15 miles of durham, gatehead, newcastle and sunderland

all have public transport links to chester le street

hardly a bad place to build a sports ground for international sport

playing test matches during the local rainy season ( cold spell too) seems stupid when
chester le street has an average rainfall well below national average
Report Injera October 6, 2016 9:25 PM BST
The expansion of the number of international grounds was an over optimistic idea that some counties bought into. I'm not sure why.

Can't blame them I suppose but did they really think they would get Tests in July/August?

The May tests are seen as less important and merely the starter before the main course that follows later. I can't see how they can be profitable especially with the ludicrous bidding process.
Report Fermat October 7, 2016 12:48 AM BST
Durham, Middlesborough, Newcastle, Gateshead and Sunderland has a total population of 750000, compared with say the Meteropiltan area of Nottingham of about 1.5 million, London 12 million, Manchester Meteropolitan area over 2 million and Birmingham meteropolitan area has 3.7 million. Leeds on its own has 750000, without counting all the other largish towns around it.
I'm not convinced Durham would fill its stadium for a test match in August for any than an Ashes test
Report donny osmond October 7, 2016 10:07 AM BST
tyne and wear...which is mainly newcastle sunderland and gateshead has a population of 1.1 million
all within range of chester le street

co durham has a population of 500,000

middlesborough is in yorkshire !
Report donny osmond October 11, 2016 11:19 AM BST
there's some info from durham website but you need to click link to download it..
Report donny osmond October 19, 2016 3:34 PM BST
Durham have agreed a financial rescue package with Durham County Council over the debts that led to their relegation this season.

The council's loans of £3.74m to the club have been converted into shares.

Durham were relegated from County Championship Division One by the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) on 3 October, amid debts of £7.5m.

They accepted a £3.8m aid package approved by the ECB and will start next season with a 48-point deduction.

The agreement with the council means Durham's debt to the local authority will not be written off.

Instead, the council will have shares in a "community interest company" (CIC) that will run the club.

"The financial situation Durham faces is untenable and the club is effectively insolvent and not viable in its current state," read the council report.

"The council's role and participation in the new board is still to be determined."

A Durham statement read: "The club is pleased that this has been achieved without the need for significant public debt write-off, as has been the case elsewhere in cricket."

Durham also face a four-point penalty in the 2017 T20 Blast and a two-point deduction in the One-Day Cup, and have lost the right to stage Test cricket at their Riverside ground.

The CIC, which will be run by a new chairman and involve a new board of directors and management structure, can pay up to 35% of profits to shareholders each year.

'Joe Public will not be happy about this'

Although the council's statement of accounts reveals an overall underspend for 2015-16, the local authority has needed to make budget cuts to a total of £153.2m, to which an estimated £104.8m must also be added over the next four years.

The document reveals Durham is the most deprived authority in the north east in terms of "the scale of income deprivation".

Independent councillor John Shuttleworth described the rescue package with Durham as "ill thought out".

He told BBC Newcastle: "We're writing off almost £4m in effect.

"Recently we've closed care homes and leisure centres and restricted services to vulnerable people - old and young - and shut schools.

"I don't think Joe Public out there is going to be very happy about it."
Report donny osmond January 24, 2017 6:50 PM GMT
durham sign stephen cook for start of 2017 season

a pleasing signing
Report donny osmond January 27, 2017 12:48 PM GMT
tom latham signs for second part of season

another pleasing signing
Report ----you-have-to-laugh--- September 11, 2023 12:19 PM BST
Leicester failing to pick up batting point sees Durham
promoted back to division 1.

Finally,...(subject to no silly points deductions.)
Report wondersobright September 13, 2023 2:31 PM BST
from early on looked miles the best in a poor division yhtl
Report wondersobright September 13, 2023 2:31 PM BST
when potts plays div 2 batting line ups have no chance
Report ----you-have-to-laugh--- September 13, 2023 3:48 PM BST
Potts has got something different in that
he sometimes gets dip, but, probably wont
see much more of him in a Durham shirt when
England come back for him.

Potts, Wood, Stokes and Carse would be a decent
bowling attack in County cricket.
Report wondersobright September 13, 2023 4:35 PM BST
Grin just a bit yeah
Report ----you-have-to-laugh--- October 1, 2023 6:59 PM BST
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