Surrey CCC chief has his say on record-breaking Blast attendances

BY MARCUS HOOK

Surrey chief executive Richard Gould believes that the club’s record-breaking summer in terms of Vitality Blast attendances was a reflection of the continued growth in popularity of the T20 competition.

Attendances were up by 15 per cent on 2018. Nationwide ticket sales jumped by 12 per cent on last year.

Each of Surrey’s seven home games was worth approximately £1million in revenue to the club.
Gould hailed his county’s achievement in attracting a record-breaking total of 165,461 people through the gates at the Oval for this season’s Blast.

“Effectively, six out of our seven home matches in the South Group were sell-outs, with the other game watched by almost a capacity crowd too,” said Gould.

“Additionally, of our 13 group games home and away – we had one washed out – there were 11 attended by ‘full house’ crowds.

“Ticket sales for games of Twenty20 have seen constant growth since 2012 right across the country, and we are now reaching a tipping point in terms of attendances for a lot of clubs.

“When you look at the numbers, can we do any better? Well, here at the Kia Oval, work to build an additional 2,000 seats – taking our capacity to 27,000 – starts next month so that’s one good way of trying to accommodate more people.”

The key statistic is that 50 per cent of all ticket sales have been to people not previously on Surrey’s database.

“This summer there is no doubt that England’s World Cup win, and then the excitement surrounding the Ashes Test series has provided cricket with a lot more of a profile,” said Gould.

“People really want to come to cricket at the moment. Indeed, this summer we have twice sold out two games in three nights on a Tuesday and a Thursday. Then, there were our games here which were sell outs even when England were playing Test cricket at Lord’s on that same day.”

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