Bransgrove: Relegation reprieve is a boost for Hampshire

Hampshire are staying up. Picture: Neil Marshall
Hampshire are staying up. Picture: Neil Marshall
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ROD BRANSGROVE has admitted Hampshire’s reprieve from relegation is a big boost ahead of next season in the County Championship.

Durham have been demoted from division one meaning the Ageas Bowl side will stay up.

Hampshire were relegated but have now been given a reprieve. Picture: Neil Marshall

Hampshire were relegated but have now been given a reprieve. Picture: Neil Marshall

It’s part of a range of conditions and sanctions imposed by the ECB following a financial aid package to help Durham meet historic and future financial demands.

Hampshire have sent their sympathy to Durham and all the players, staff and supporters there.

However, the news means the Ageas Bowl outfit can now plan ahead for top-flight cricket again.

Bransgrove said: ‘I have enormous sympathy for Durham and the financial difficulties they currently find themselves in.

‘I also fully endorse the support of the ECB in helping one of its 18 first-class stakeholders to survive in the long-term and am satisfied the sanctions imposed as a result of Durham’s circumstances are fair and have been well considered.

‘Of course, the fact Hampshire benefit from all of this is fortuitous for the club and will give us all a great boost as we plan for next summer.’

Bransgrove believes the team will be stronger after their tough experience this year.

They will be looking to make the most of their unexpected opportunity to stay at the top level and show they deserve to be there.

He added: ‘Given the unprecedented list of injuries that we faced this year, I believe we will not discredit the first division next season and I am very much looking forward to seeing what the 2017 campaign will bring with a full-strength and enhanced Hampshire squad.’