(ESPNcricinfo) – England will extend its tours of West Indies in 2022, adding an extra Test and two more T20Is to their schedule.
The tour next January will now feature five T20Is – increased from three matches – to be followed by England returning to the Caribbean for three Test matches in March – increased from the original two games.
The possibility of extending the tour, expected to be worth nearly US$100m to the region, was reported by ESPNcricinfo last week, with CWI President Ricky Skerritt saying it would be an acknowledgement of West Indies’ agreement to travel to England last year. That trip, consisting of three Tests behind closed doors in Southampton and Manchester, helped the ECB stage a complete international season in the middle of the pandemic and avoid an estimated £380 million budget black hole, but Skerritt said it had not earned the tourists anything financially.
Each Test match of the West Indies tour is estimated to be worth US$20-$25 million to the hosts and each T20I US$4 million.
“This expansion of next year’s England tour to the Caribbean is welcome news for West Indies Cricket and for the region’s tourism economy,” Skerritt said when the tour extension was confirmed on Wednesday. “It has come about because of the special relationship that has been developed between our respective boards.
“We have already begun discussions on how the ECB can help us in our development programs and I am pleased that ECB has been showing so much appetite and goodwill to assist.”
Ian Watmore, the ECB Chair, said: “We hugely appreciated the support of Cricket West Indies, and all its men’s and women’s players, in helping us host a full season of international cricket in the summer of 2020. Following the conclusion of those tours to England we have been in discussions with CWI to understand how we can best support them moving forward and one way was to extend our existing England men’s tours to the Caribbean in 2022.”
The three Tests will form part of the next ICC World Test Championship, while the additional T20Is will make it the biggest series between the sides in the shortest format, providing extra preparation ahead of the T20 World Cup in Australia the following October.
The Test series will be the first in which England and West Indies compete for the newly commissioned Richards-Botham Trophy, named in honour of West Indies’ batting icon Sir Vivian Richards and England’s great allrounder Lord Ian Botham.
The venues for the matches are expected to be announced by the end of April.