In a financial year in which many counties have struggled as a result of the downturn in the economy, Leicestershire have recorded a small profit of £689 for 2009. This is the first time the county has recorded a profit since 2003, and heavy financial losses were suffered in 2007 and 2008.

"I am expecting difficult trading conditions to continue throughout 2010, with sponsorship and advertising revenue streams in particular continuing to be under pressure," said Leicestershire chief executive David Smith. "But we are hopeful with three Friday night Twenty20 matches in June and July to see an increase in our corporate hospitality revenue."

Despite the financial difficulties faced, Leicestershire have decided to substantially increase their investment in the cricket playing budget for the 2010 season, recruiting former England bowler Matthew Hoggard as club captain, and Brad Hodge as a second overseas player - to go with fellow Australian Andrew McDonald - for this year's domestic Twenty20 competition.

"Non Test match cricket clubs will face many challenges over the next few years but I believe that after a difficult few seasons, as we move forward, the club has genuine reasons for optimism," Smith added.