CHANGES to the set up of the domestic cricket season in England have been given the thumbs up by Paul Grayson.

Essex’s head coach said he likes the alterations made by the ECB for 2014 which will see most County Championship games start on Sunday, the T20 competition spread out over the season and a new 50-over cup played in the latter months of the calendar.

Grayson said he thought the tweaks to the structure would be popular with players, coaches and fans.

“Purely from a marketing point of view I think spreading the T20 over the season is good,” he said.

“Talking to coaches and players, squeezing it all in a three or four-week window can be a bit much and this will allow them to play and develop more.

“It will be exciting to play some 50-over cricket as well for the first time in a few years.

“We’ve enjoyed the 40 over games here at Essex but this will be a new challenge.

“Also it is good of for the fans that most County Championship games start on Sunday as there was bit of confusion before about when games started with them starting on all different days.”

The 50-over and T20 matches will be captained by Ryan ten Doeschate who has taken over the one-day armband from James Foster, who continues as County Championship skipper.

Grayson said: “Ryan’s got a huge amount of experience having played in the IPL and Big Bash and on the international stage.

“What we have found in the past is when we put Ryan in a leadership role it brings more out of him and hopefully he’ll come up with some fresh ideas.”

Ten Doeschate’s reign may be put on hold momentarily should an IPL team pick him up at auction next week. Grayson said no new signings are on the horizon yet, but this will change if the all-rounder or Ravi Bopara get IPL contacts.

Grayson said: “We’ll wait and see if they get picked and if so, we’ll probably have to get an overseas player in, but we’ll have to wait and see what happens.”