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Mo Bobat and County Cricket

Cricinfo has this  interview with ECB "Performance Director" Mo Bobat.  Bobat makes an interesting claim about county cricket, "Take something like county batting average. We know that a county batting average does not significantly predict an international batting average, so a lot of the conventional things that are looked at as being indicators of success - they don't really stand true in a predictive sense."  And later in the article there is a graph, showing county averages plotted against test averages for 13 English test batsmen.  This is reproduced below. better than random? raw data suggests no meaningful link between championship and test averages 20 25 30 35 40 45 50 55 60 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 Test County Championship Sam Curran England players' batting averages
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Yorkshire 2022 Accounts

Yorkshire recently released their annual accounts for the year ended 31 December 2022.  This is a review of those accounts which updates  this post on the 2021 financial statements. Summary Yorkshire disclose both a "normal" profit and loss for 2022 and an exceptional loss relating to the continued fall out from the Azeem Rafiq affair.  The table below splits the 2021 and 2022 loss between normal and exceptional profit / loss.   Year     2021 2022       Ordinary activities 1,327,190 (580,703) Exceptional Loss (1,892,071) (1,643,629)       Total Loss (564,881) (2,224,332) The loss for the period is just over £2.2m (rather less than the £3m loss predicted by the  Yorkshire Post ). Exceptional costs related to the Azeem Rafiq case were slightly down in 2022 compared to 2021.  It looks as if payments to settle an unfair dismissal case brought by Andrew Gale and five other employees were in line with the amounts provided in the 2021 accounts, but legal fees in conne

Cricket Australia: New Media Rights Deal

Cricket Australia (CA) have signed a new broadcasting deal.  This post covers that deal and provides a follow up to my  post on media rights for the BCCI , ECB & C A The deal is for 7 years, starting in 2024 and is for Auz$1.5bn which is just north of $1.0bn US or £0.8bn.  This is Auz$216m a year compared to the Auz$197m a year under the current 6 year rights package an increase of almost 10%.  However, Australian inflation is currently running at 8% a year and the final payment under the new rights package will be made 13 years after the first payment of the existing deal.  In inflation adjusted terms the deal represents a cut in CA domestic broadcasting revenues, by perhaps as much as 20%. A couple of points that caught my eye.  Firstly the deal includes the Big Bash, but the number of Big Bash games has been reduced, from the current 61 matches to 43.  Clearly franchise cricket is popular and new franchise leagues are springing up around the world, but it remains to be seen how

Warwickshire 2022 Annual Report and Accounts

Warwickshire have released their accounts for the period to 30 September 2022, which are available  here . This post is my analysis of those accounts, a similar post for 2021 is  here .  I always look at Warwickshire's accounts in some detail, largely because I'm a member but also they are one of the first counties to release accounts which provide an insight into the health of English county cricket.  (This insight won't be available for future periods as Warwickshire intend to move their accounting date to 31 December from the current 30 September.) 2022 Summary These are an excellent set of results.  The county made a record profit before tax of £2.9m.  (There was a tax charge for the period but I've excluded it from the chart below as it was an accounting adjustment only, but if Warwickshire make this level of profits in the future they will have tax to pay.) In the past I've always looked at Warwickshire's accounting profit alongside an adjusted measure whi

Executive Pay At First Class Counties

The first post of 2023 is on executive pay at first class county cricket clubs.  Figures are taken from 2021 accounts (or in a couple of instances accounts for the year to 31 January 2022) and are part of 2021 accounts post trilogy, along with the prestigious  Bentley - Forbes Consulting rankings  and  2021 membership figures . A quick note on methodology - the figures in the table below are compiled from the Key Management Personnel (KMP) related parties disclosure in the individual county's financial statements. The table is in alphabetical order rather than having the highest paying county at the top as it's not really fair to compare counties as although all businesses have to disclose payments to KMP there is not set definition of what a KMP does.  So you might get two counties (A&B) paying exactly the same wages for exactly the same roles, but county A might have a higher level of payments to KMP as A considers a particular role to be a KMP but B doesn't.  That sa

ECB Accounts Inaccurate

This post is a sideonview exclusive which reveals an error in the ECB's accounts for the year to 31 January 2021. The issue was netting off grant payments against costs rather than disclosing separately and was originally covered in this blog,  here . I also raised the point with the Financial Reporting Council who have reviewed the treatment by the ECB of grant income received.  The text of the review is  here  and is reproduced below. Grant income "We asked the company to quantify the funds received from HMRC for the furlough of staff and to explain why the payroll costs were offset by the related income, which is not permitted by FRS 102 or the Companies Act 2006. The company confirmed that the funds received of £1.7m for the furlough of staff had been incorrectly offset against administrative expenses. However, it concluded that the effect of this error and the amount to be disclosed was not material. The company provided us with an analysis to support their view. We also

Bentley Forbes Rankings 2021

The prestigious Bentley Forbes Consulting county cricket financial rankings for 2021 are out now! Rankings for 2020 are:  here  & if this is your sort of thing you can go all the way back to  2016 . I've ranked the 17 eligible counties (no Hampshire as they are part of Rod Bransgrove's business interests) by the patented* Bentley Forbes  financial strength algorithm**, a mixture of profitability and balance sheet resilience and given a brief (sometimes very brief) write up to each county.  But first a few general comments. Cricket isn't like championship football or seemingly premier league rugby, loss making and dependent on indulgent and / or dubious owners.    All 18 first class counties came through covid intact and in 2021 the 17 counties in the rankings made an aggregate net profit of just less than £7m.    That's not to say that everything is perfect, Surrey and Lancashire, made £5.2m of the total profits of £7m and 5 counties were loss making in 2021.  Of th

County Members

The 15 counties that are members' organisations submit returns to the FCA (Well they are supposed to, a bit more on that below) which include the number of members.  The figures for 2021 are as follows: County   Members Derbyshire   871 Essex*   4348 Glamorgan   2180 Gloucester   3590 Kent   1570 Lancashire   3460 Leicestershire   880 Middlesex   7312 Nottinghamshire   5475 Somerset   6713 Sussex   1671 Surrey   17115 Warwickshire*   4418 Worcestershire   1787 Yorkshire   3408     64798     The asterix next to Warwickshire and Essex is because those counties haven't managed to file their 2021 annual returns, it's only a legal requirement chaps, no need to rush.  In the absence of 2021 data, I've used 2019 figures.  So roughly 65,000 county members, perhaps a few less.   The data section of the excellent  Bythesightscreen blog  includes data on county membership numbers going back as far as 2005.  It shows memberships as 71,000 for 2