County news February 27, 2012

Hampshire sell Rose Bowl naming rights

ESPNcricinfo staff

Hampshire have announced a sponsorship deal that will see their Rose Bowl ground officially rebranded as the Ageas Bowl. The news is a further boost to Hampshire's precarious financial position, coming two months after the county reached an agreement with Eastleigh Borough Council to sell the site for £6.5m and then lease it back.

The six-year agreement, described as a "significant long-term investment", will see the ground on the outskirts of Southampton named after insurance provider Ageas, which has its UK headquarters in nearby Eastleigh.

"We are delighted to be entering into this partnership with Ageas," Hampshire chairman Rod Bransgrove said. "The nature of the deal ensures long-term investment in the club, allowing us to continue to grow as a venue. That, in turn, means we can improve our customer's experience, be they cricket fans here to enjoy an England or Hampshire match, or any one of the tens of thousands of people who use the venue each year for their weddings, Christmas parties, conferences and events."

The Rose Bowl is due to host two England one-day internationals in 2012, during the visits of West Indies and South Africa, but missed out on lucrative Ashes Tests in 2013 and 2015.

Edited by Alan Gardner