Unfortunately, the MCC had to bring forward our allocated date for the Lord’s fixture from September to June and, despite our best efforts to try and make this work, we have concluded that this date is not be viable. There are a number of reasons for this, related to fixtures, government, MOD and Single Service rules and a large element of uncertainty but, perhaps unsurprisingly, it ultimately comes back to COVID-related issues. We worked closely with the MCC, to see if we could find a way to make it work but have now, reluctantly, accepted that for 2021 will simply not be possible to hold the IST20 at Lord’s. The MCC did their best to try and accommodate the fixture but significant pressure on their overall programme (including test and county fixtures) has constrained their freedom of manoeuvre. The good news, however, is the MCC appreciate our situation and have kindly agreed that we will be invited back in 2022.
For this year, we are very keen to run the IST20 because, having not been contested in 2020, it is important that the Trophy is competed for. Therefore, our intent is to run the event in a similar format at a suitable venue sometime towards the end of the Summer (Aug – Sep). We considered other high-profile, professional venues but the issues and constraints would have been similar with those at Lord’s. Therefore we have decided to try and secure a high quality venue that will deliver what we need without some of the complications associated with professional cricket. Although planning is in the early stages, we are considering a number of potential venues including Arundel and Wormsley; both of which are iconic cricket grounds in their own right. This will enable high quality cricket and, as far as possible within COVID restrictions, we will try and provide an enjoyable experience for players, spectators and sponsors.
Whilst I know you will share our disappointment that we won’t be playing at Lord’s this year, we hope you will be able to support the alternative event and we look forward to welcoming you all back to Lord’s for a COVID-free competition in 2022. We will inform you as soon as we have confirmed the new date and location for this summer and look forward to seeing you there.