Counties push for increased incentives to nurture English talent

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English counties are pressing for increased payments from the ECB when players they have developed feature in international or representative cricket. Talks are underway to update the County Partnership Agreement for the 2025-28 period, and Performance-Related Fee Payments are being discussed as an area for potential change. Under current arrangements, counties receive payments when players they have developed appear for England Under-19s, England Lions, or the full England side. These payments are weighted according to a points system, giving preference to multi-day cricket over shorter formats. Somerset’s chief executive, Gordon Hollins, supports the system but is calling for a greater level of payment for success to provide a real incentive for clubs to develop players. He gave the example of Jack Leach, a Somerset academy graduate, to illustrate the current system’s shortcomings. There are also suggestions to make national counties eligible for PRFPs, as they are currently excluded. An increase in funds for PRFPs was among the recommendations of Andrew Strauss’s High Performance Review in 2022.

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