County Cricket Ground, Chelmsford
The Pavilion at Chelmsford
| River End |
Hayes Close End
|First ODI||20 June 1983:|
Australia v India
|Last ODI||29 May 1999:|
South Africa v Zimbabwe
|As of 16 December 2007|
The Essex County Ground (ECG) is a cricket venue in Chelmsford, Essex, England. It has been home to Essex County Cricket Club since 1967. The ground has a capacity of 6,500, mostly in single-tier seating with a single double-tiered stand. Its pavilion was completed in the 1970s.
Chelmsford is a small ground, and therefore suits big-hitting batsmen. Former Essex and England batsman Graham Gooch scored most of his first-class runs there. Graham Napier scored 152 off 58 balls (16 sixes and 10 fours) in a Twenty20 match v Sussex at the ground. The success of Essex County Cricket Club in the shorter versions of the game between 2005 and 2008 led to the attraction of many new fans. Eventually the ground was regularly selling out in Twenty20 and Friends Provident Trophy games.
The Ford Motor Company had naming rights for the ground for between 2005 and 2013. From 2017 to 2019 the naming rights to the stadium have been bought by Cloudfm and therefore the ground will be known as the Cloudfm County Ground.  The large amount of passionate support Essex receive at this ground has led to it being popularly referred to as 'Fortress Chelmsford'.
As of March 2020[update], the venue hosted only two ODIs. The first ODI was played between Australia and India during 1983 Cricket World Cup and the last ODI match was played between South Africa and Zimbabwe during 1999 Cricket World Cup.
In 2020, the venue was scheduled to host an international match when Ireland's National Cricket Team were due to be playing against Bangladesh in the second T20I match of the tour; being held in England due to renovations and unavailability of ICC-standard pitches in Ireland the T20I. This was supposed to be the first time Ireland are hosting any match outside Ireland. However the series is now on hold (As at 28/05/2020) and is currently uknown if any of the scheduled matches are to be rescheduled or cancelled due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
Ground Renovations (2010-2020)
Leading upto 2019 New developments at the stadium include the building of new apartment blocks, new pavilion, cricket school, public square and bridge.  Also a nearby pay & display car-park with direct access to central park has since been re-purposed for usage by the cricket club.
In 2019 the floodlights which were current at the time, were taken down and gradually replaced by new, much larger square floodlights (Believed by local's to be LED) The timeframe programme of these was originally designed to be complete ready for the lights to be used in the T20 Blast series, with most matches usually held in a Day-Night format, with fixtures starting in the evening at dusk, and concluding under the floodlights after dark. Despite having the lights ready they are unlikely to be used in an actual match during the calendar year of 2020.
- "County Ground". ESPNcricinfo. Retrieved 16 May 2013.
- "Awesome Napier shatters records". BBC Sport. 24 June 2008. Retrieved 16 May 2013.
- "Essex rename ground with sponsors". BBC Sport. 17 March 2005. Retrieved 16 May 2013.
- Arnold, David (17 January 2013). "Essex keen to sell name of stadium". This is total Essex. Retrieved 16 May 2013.
- "Cloudfm 'declares' new sponsorship deal with Essex Cricket | Cloudfm Group". cloudfmgroup.com. Retrieved 15 February 2017.
- Long, James (21 May 2012). "Eagle Extras: Just how big are Essex?". Eastern Daily Press. Archived from the original on 10 March 2014. Retrieved 16 May 2013.
- "Ireland set to host Bangladesh T20Is in England". Cricbuzz. Retrieved 9 March 2020.
- "Essex County Cricket Club signs ground redevelopment deal". BBC News. 14 January 2013. Retrieved 15 February 2017.
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