Lancashire facing "multi-millions" in losses after England vs India cancellation

Lancashire 's chief executive Daniel Gidney has said the club are facing "multi-millions of pounds" worth of losses after the final Test between England and India was called off.

After a fourth positive coronavirus test among India's backroom staff on Thursday, the game was cancelled hours before it was due to start because of "fears of a further increase in the number of COVID cases" within the Indian camp.

The cancellation will have a major financial impact on Lancashire, who were hosting the game at Old Trafford.

The 22,000 capacity ground was sold out for the first three days of the Test and had also sold around 20,000 tickets for day four.

All ticket holders will be refunded in full and, after an already difficult financial year for the county, Gidney has warned that it will come at a major cost to Lancashire.

He said: "These are unprecedented circumstances. We're in mitigation mode at this point. We will need to work through this with the ECB.

"How big are our losses? We're talking about significant sums here. We're talking over seven figures. It's multi-millions of pounds. It's very challenging. We will need to work with the ECB and others to support us through this."

He added: "We have a lot of people who have committed to five days' work with us. We have to work through that.

"We had built up reserves, but the first six months' of the pandemic effectively ate through all that.

"So we're back to scratch, really. But we're a resilient club: we've been through two world wars and a pandemic. We'll work our way through this."

Lancashire have also donated 'all surplus, pre-prepared food for players, hospitality, and media guests to several local charities'.

Lancashire's sales director Angela Hodson said: "The Club had catering prepared for thousands of guests across five days and as soon as we received confirmation that the game was off, our thoughts turned to how we can quickly distribute our surplus food out into the community.

"Everybody at Emirates Old Trafford hopes that this small gesture can make a positive difference across our community this weekend."

Meanwhile, ECB chief executive Tom Harrison has told Sky Sports that they are working "tooth and nail" to ensure the financial impact is "as limited as it can be".

"There are obviously financial implications to this," he said. "We're taking steps now to mitigate those, to make sure the things we are doing now, whether that's about rescheduling or looking at the schedule again to examine how we can minimise the consequences of something like this.

"You lose an India Test match, of course there is a financial implication to that. We're just trying to work tooth and nail now to make sure that's as limited as it can be."

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