2015 Ashes snub to North branded 'very sad'


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The decision to leave the north of England without an Ashes Test in the 2015 series has been branded "very sad", by Lancashire's chief executive Jim Cumbes.

Although Lancashire and Durham have been awarded Ashes Tests in 2013 by the England and Wales Cricket Board, the most northerly venue in 2015 will be in the East Midlands – Nottinghamshire's Trent Bridge. Cumbes, speaking at a news conference at Old Trafford where the County Championship trophy was on display, said: "The realisation that in 2015 there will be no Australia Test match north of the Midlands is very sad for the northern part of the country. Our goal was to get 2013, although in an ideal world we would have liked 2015 too.

"Whether it's Old Trafford or Headingley, I'm sad that somewhere like Yorkshire cannot stage an Ashes Test match. I don't want them to stage one instead of us but I'm very sad about that because these are just hotbeds of cricket in this part of the world."

The award of a 2013 Ashes Test should secure Lancashire's financial future after several years in the international wilderness during which time the club have experienced such severe cashflow problems that at times it looked as though they would struggle to pay the players. The Lancashire chairman Michael Cairns admitted the county had had to take "massive risks" in terms of launching a redevelopment of the ground that will total £42m, and saw them embroiled in a lengthy legal dispute that alone cost them £4m.

The award of the Ashes, coupled with the county winning the championship outright for the first time in 77 years, has now provided some security.