Smaller counties could host some Hundred games as ECB seek consensus

A general view of the Riverside ground Getty Images

Some games in The Hundred could be played away from their host cities as the ECB bid to appease smaller counties.

While the ECB have recently declined requests from some counties - notably Gloucestershire - to increase the number of hosting teams from eight to nine or 10, there does appear to be increased hope from some of those who missed out staging agreements that, in the competition's second year, they will be given the opportunity to host games.

So Durham remain hopeful of hosting one of the games given to Yorkshire in 2021 - it seems there is no such expectation in the tournament's first year - while Somerset hope for a similar reciprocal agreement with the team based in Cardiff.

With only four home games scheduled for the group stages of the competition, however, it seems there will be few opportunities for such agreements. The likes of Somerset and Gloucestershire, therefore, may be looking at hosting a game each every other year at best and it remains possible that such talk will come to nothing and is simply designed to pacify the counties.

Disagreement is also likely over the branding and, perhaps, the naming of the new teams. While it was initially announced that crossovers between new identities and county brands would be avoided to ensure no cannibalism of existing brands, there is a concern from some within the game that the teams based in Cardiff, Lord's and Leeds, in particular, will lean pretty heavily on recognisable images in an attempt to appeal to existing supporters.