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Thursday, April 30, 2020
The Hundred Featuring Rawlins Postponed Until 2021

The Hundred - the England and Wales Cricket Board's new city-based tournament - has been postponed until 2021 because of the coronavirus pandemic.

The 100-ball competition, involving eight teams including Delray Rawlins and his Southern Brave teammates, was due to begin on July 17th and end on August 15th.

An England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) meeting on Wednesday concluded it was not possible for The Hundred to be staged this year.

"Of course today's decision is tinged with disappointment but we do recognise the country is going through something unprecedented," ECB chief executive Tom Harrison told BBC Sport.

"All sectors of society are redeploying their thinking to how we help the country get out of this, rather than fulfilling the ambitions we might have for our certain sports.

"In our case, the sacrifices we are making at the moment seem very small in comparison to what is happening in the big picture."
The ECB had previously extended the shutdown on cricket in England and Wales until at least July 1st.

If and when the 2020 season does begin, the national governing body has already stated it will focus on delivering men's and women's internationals, as well as domestic first-class and limited-overs competitions, in the period between July and the end of September.

However, it seems likely the majority of cricket would have to be played behind closed doors, contradicting the stated aim of The Hundred in attracting a new audience to the game.

The complexities of planning in a time of social distancing, travel restrictions that would potentially affect players and coaches from overseas, and significant furloughing of staff across 20 host venues, also contributed to the decision to postpone.

Harrison added the intention will be to deliver The Hundred as it was planned this year, but said there are "decisions" to be made on whether all players remain with the teams they were drafted to.

Complications are most likely to come with overseas players who were available in 2020 but will not be next year, and the ECB is working with the Professional Cricketers' Association and other key stakeholders with regard to player selection and retention for 2021.

The 18 first-class counties were due to each rwe have with cricket in this country."
More than 180,000 tickets were sold for matches scheduled in 2020, all of which will be refunded. Anyone who bought tickets and those signed up to the competition's website will be notified of how to purchase tickets for 2021.
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