England`s Ashes woes set to cost ECB millions

Updated: Jan 29, 2007, 09:19 AM IST

Sydney, Jan 29: England are not just turning out to be a cricketing disaster in Australia, they are also set to become a more-than-three-million-dollar economic catastrophe for the ECB as Andrew Flintoff and co are being paid 2000 dollars per day in the
100-day long tour.

According to a report in the `Daily Telegraph`, the English
players are set to earn as much as 170,000 dollars for the
disastrous tour, in which they became the first side in 86 years to
lose the Ashes 0-5.

The visitors have proved no good at the ODIs as well and have
just one win in the tri-nation series -- also involving New Zealand
-- so far.

The England and Wales Cricket Board had initially set aside
three million dollars for the tour but match fees`, boarding and
lodging expenses along with the burden of a huge support staff has
seen the estimates rise sharply.

However, the team`s performance has been pathetic to say the
least and they touched a new low when they went down by nine wickets
to Australia after scoring just 110.

In contrast, Cricket Australia has been laughing its way to the
bank as people are turning up in huge numbers to watch the home side
decimate their rivals.

``Crowds are obviously strong, TV ratings are up six percent on
last year`s one-day figures, the appetite of the Aussie fans hasn`t
diminished,`` CA spokesman peter young was quoted as saying by the

``Australian fans will queue up around the corner to watch
Australia win. At the moment, obviously there is a great deal of
confidence in Australia`s performance and they want to be part of
it,`` he added.

Bureau Report