County news September 25, 2010

Surrey staff face redundancy

ESPNcricinfo staff

Surrey's off-field staff could face redundancies as the club streamlines its structures in an attempt to plug a budget deficit and deal with reduced revenues from ticket sales. "We want to get the club structured so we can cope for what we expect to be much worse times next year," chief executive Paul Sheldon told BBC Surrey. "This is in keeping with a global response to difficult times."

The news comes with the England & Wales Cricket Board expected to endorse plans to cut the number of group games in next year's domestic Twenty20 competition from 16 to 10, with counties divided in three groups as opposed to this year's two, at its meeting on Wednesday. Most counties faced lower attendances at individual games this summer and there was widespread dissatisfaction among players at the amount of fixtures on the domestic schedule.

"Two summers ago we played 10 group games, five home and five away. That worked very well," said Sheldon. "This summer we increased the number of games and the same number of people came to watch eight home matches as came to watch five. We've spread the audience across the board and I hope we learn from that.

"Last year we had the Ashes, which was a fantastic experience and made us a lot of money," said Sheldon. This summer was the first time for 25 years that our Test match has not sold out and it is my responsibility as chief executive of the business to make sure that we react to that."