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MCC members to vote on the club’s involvement in The Hundred

MCC members to vote on the club’s involvement in The Hundred

New Delhi, June 6 (SocialNews.XYZ) The Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC) has announced that it will hold a special general meeting (SGM) in September, allowing its members to vote on the club's increased involvement in The Hundred. This decision comes as MCC plans to accept the England and Wales Cricket Board's (ECB) proposed gift of 51% of the shares in the London Spirit team, thereby retaining its position as the majority shareholder.

However, the MCC leadership has emphasized the importance of member approval before moving forward.


On May 30, the ECB confirmed its intention to attract private investment for The Hundred's eight teams and appointed the Raine Group and Deloitte as advisors. Under the proposed model, the eight 'hosts' – comprising seven counties and the MCC – will be given majority stakes in their respective teams, with the ECB selling the remaining 49% to private investors. This model aims to infuse fresh capital into the competition and enhance its growth prospects.

Guy Lavender, MCC’s chief executive, communicated the committee's support for the proposal to the club's members. "Subject to the satisfactory conclusion of negotiations between the various parties, we are firmly of the view that MCC should accept ECB's offer of the 51% equity share in the London Spirit franchise and participate fully in a tournament which will grow the men's and women's game," Lavender wrote.

While some hosts may choose to sell part or all of their stakes, Lavender noted that MCC's initial stance is to retain its 51% share. "We wish to retain control of the franchise and believe the tournament will grow over time," he explained. "Pragmatically, we will need to keep that position under review both through the initial sales phase and in the future."

Despite the club’s support for the ECB’s proposals, the MCC has made it clear that members' approval is crucial. Consultations with members will continue over the coming weeks, leading up to the SGM on September 9, where the vote will take place. The results are expected to be announced a week later.

The MCC will retain the right to veto any potential minority shareholder for the London Spirit. "This decision is not about accepting the highest bidder," Lavender clarified. "It is about finding the right partner who has the skills and expertise to help us grow the franchise, whilst also recognizing and understanding the history, values, and uniqueness of MCC."

Lavender expressed uncertainty about the practicality of members voting on the identity of potential partners, suggesting that rejecting a proposed investment partner could be damaging to the ECB and the counties’ plans to generate revenue for English cricket.

London Spirit, associated with Lord's, is expected to be the most valuable franchise in The Hundred. Andrew Umbers, co-founder of Oakwell Sports Advisory, highlighted this on the Unofficial Partner podcast.

"Those MCC members are sitting on a bit of a goldmine," Umbers remarked. "With the scarcity premium of the two London teams, jeez, it's [worth] a lot. I'm sure Reliance and the Ambani family are going to be really interested in one of the big two in London."

The other counties hosting teams in The Hundred are also evaluating their positions. These include Surrey (Oval Invincibles), Hampshire (Southern Brave), Glamorgan (Welsh Fire), Warwickshire (Birmingham Phoenix), Nottinghamshire (Trent Rockets), Lancashire (Manchester Originals), and Yorkshire (Northern Superchargers). Hampshire, being a private club, differs from the others, which have not publicly committed to giving their members a direct vote on The Hundred's privatization.

Alan Higham, coordinator of the County Cricket Members Group, praised MCC's approach. "This shows that the MCC recognizes the significance of the decision not just for the club but the game as a whole, and was sincere in its recent promise to listen to and respect members' views," Higham told ESPNcricinfo. "We expect all well-run boards of member-owned counties to want their members' approval before agreeing to such seismic changes."

Source: IANS

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MCC members to vote on the club’s involvement in The Hundred

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