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County Cricket fixtures: 2021 Men’s County Championship schedule & dates revealed

by Wisden Staff 3 minute read

ECB have announced the group stage schedule for the 2021 Men’s County Championship, with the season set to begin on April 8.

Defending champions Essex start their campaign against Worcestershire at the Cloudfm County Ground on Thursday, April 8 with the first nine rounds of matches scheduled for consecutive weeks, all starting on Thursdays. Round 10 and 11 matches will be played in July and have been scheduled to start on a Sunday.

According to the schedule for the 2021 County Championship season, which has been remodelled due to the Covid-19 pandemic, all the 18 county sides have been divided into three seeded groups of six where every county will play five home and away matches each in the group stage. The top two teams from each group will make it to Division 1, while the remaining sides will form Division 2 and 3.

The divisional stage has been scheduled to start on Monday, August 30, where every team will play four more matches. The winners of Division 1 will be crowned the 2021 men’s county championship winners. The five-day Bob Willis Trophy final, to be played between the top two sides in Division 1, has been scheduled to start on Tuesday, September 27.

“We’re all looking forward to the return of the County Championship in 2021 after a very challenging year in 2020,” Neil Snowball, ECB Managing Director County Cricket, said.

“Despite the significant hurdles that we faced this year, the domestic game still found a way to play meaningful cricket across men’s and women’s formats while ensuring that our members and supporters were able to remain close to the game through advanced live streaming of matches.

“Once again we have seen an innovative and collaborative approach between the ECB and the 18 First Class Counties that has enabled us to plan for 2021 with a new, County Championship structure for 2021 only, that is designed to be both exciting for players and supporters and also flexible to the possible ongoing impact of COVID-19.

“We are also working hard with all 18 First-Class Counties to ensure that we are able to welcome the return of crowds safely next year and will continue to work closely with Government and all relevant authorities.”

2021 Men’s County Championship groups:

Group 1: Essex, Worcestershire, Nottinghamshire, Durham, Warwickshire, Derbyshire

Group 2: Middlesex, Somerset, Leicestershire, Hampshire, Gloucestershire, Surrey

Group 3: Northamptonshire, Kent, Sussex, Lancashire, Yorkshire, Glamorgan

2021 Men’s County Championship full schedule:

Thursday, April 8
Northamptonshire v Kent, The County Ground
Essex v Worcestershire, The Cloudfm County Ground
Sussex v Lancashire,  The 1st Central County Ground
Middlesex v Somerset, Lord’s
Leicestershire v Hampshire, The Fischer County Ground
Gloucestershire v Surrey, Bristol County Ground
Nottinghamshire v Durham, Trent Bridge
Yorkshire v Glamorgan, Emerald Headingley
Warwickshire v Derbyshire, Edgbaston

Thursday, April 15
Hampshire v Middlesex, Ageas Bowl
Lancashire v Northamptonshire, Emirates Old Trafford
Kent v Yorkshire, Canterbury
Glamorgan v Sussex, Sophia Gardens
Somerset v Gloucestershire, The Cooper Associates County
Derbyshire v Worcestershire, The Incora County Ground
Essex v Durham, The Cloudfm County Ground
Nottinghamshire v Warwickshire, Trent Bridge
Surrey v Leicestershire, Kia Oval

Thursday, April 22
Sussex v Yorkshire, The 1st Central County Ground
Durham v Derbyshire, Emirates Riverside
Kent v Lancashire, Canterbury
Worcestershire v Nottinghamshire, New Road
Hampshire v Gloucestershire, Ageas Bowl
Warwickshire v Essex, Edgbaston
Middlesex v Surrey, Lord’s
Northamptonshire v Glamorgan, The County Ground
Leicestershire v Somerset, The Fischer County Ground

Thursday, April 29
Lancashire v Sussex, Emirates Old Trafford
Derbyshire v Nottinghamshire, The Incora County Ground
Worcestershire v Essex, New Road
Durham v Warwickshire, Emirates Riverside
Gloucestershire v Leicestershire, Bristol County Ground
Somerset v Middlesex, The Cooper Associates County
Glamorgan v Kent, Sophia Gardens
Yorkshire Northamptonshire Emerald Headingley
Surrey Hampshire Kia Oval

Thursday, May 6
Yorkshire v Kent, Emerald Headingley
Leicestershire v Surrey, The Fischer County Ground
Warwickshire v Worcestershire, Edgbaston
Middlesex v Gloucestershire, Lord’s
Lancashire v Glamorgan, Emirates Old Trafford
Northamptonshire v Sussex, The County Ground
Hampshire v Somerset, Ageas Bowl
Nottinghamshire v Essex, Trent Bridge

Thursday, May 13
Essex v Derbyshire, The Cloudfm County Ground
Sussex v Kent, The 1st Central County Ground
Glamorgan v Yorkshire, Sophia Gardens
Middlesex v Hampshire, Lord’s
Durham v Worcestershire, Emirates Riverside
Somerset v Surrey, The Cooper Associates County

Thursday, May 20
Nottinghamshire v Worcestershire, Trent Bridge
Essex v Warwickshire, The Cloudfm County Ground
Derbyshire v Durham, The Incora County Ground
Northamptonshire v Lancashire, The County Ground
Kent v Glamorgan, Canterbury
Hampshire v Leicestershire, Ageas Bowl
Gloucestershire v Somerset, Bristol County Ground
Surrey v Middlesex, Kia Oval

Thursday, May 27
Durham v Essex, Emirates Riverside
Warwickshire v Nottinghamshire, Edgbaston
Worcestershire v Derbyshire, New Road
Lancashire v Yorkshire, Emirates Old Trafford
Sussex v Northamptonshire, The 1st Central County Ground
Surrey v Gloucestershire, Kia Oval
Leicestershire v Middlesex, The Fischer County Ground

Thursday, June 3
Yorkshire v Sussex, Emerald Headingley
Worcestershire v Durham, New Road
Essex v Nottinghamshire, The Cloudfm County Ground
Derbyshire v Warwickshire, The Incora County Ground
Kent v Northamptonshire, Canterbury
Glamorgan v Lancashire, Colwyn Bay
Somerset v Hampshire, The Cooper Associates County
Leicestershire v Gloucestershire, The Fischer County Ground

Sunday, July 4
Lancashire v Kent, Emirates Old Trafford
Northamptonshire v Yorkshire, The County Ground
Gloucestershire v Middlesex, Cheltenham
Sussex v Glamorgan, The 1st Central County Ground
Nottinghamshire v Derbyshire, Trent Bridge
Warwickshire v Durham, Edgbaston
Hampshire v Surrey, Ageas Bowl
Somerset v Leicestershire, The Cooper Associates County

Sunday, July 11
Derbyshire v Essex, Chesterfield
Durham v Nottinghamshire, Emirates Riverside
Worcestershire v Warwickshire, New Road
Yorkshire v Lancashire, Scarborough
Gloucestershire v Hampshire, Cheltenham
Middlesex v Leicestershire, Merchant Taylors
Surrey v Somerset, Kia Oval
Glamorgan v Northamptonshire, Sophia Gardens
Kent v Sussex, Beckenham

Divisional Stage
Round 1: Aug 30 – Sept 2
Round 2: Sept 5-8
Round 3: Sept 12-15
Round 4: Sept 21-24

Bob Willis Trophy Final: Sept 27-Oct 1

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