John Stephenson will leave his position as assistant secretary at Marylebone Cricket Club to become the chief executive officer of Essex.

Stephenson, who has spent 17 years at MCC and will be replaced by Jamie Cox, is due to begin his new position in early October and take overall responsibility for the day-to-day running of the club.

The 56-year-old came through the Essex academy and had two stints with the county as a player, between 1984-1994 and 2002-2004.

“Having spent over a decade with the club as a player, I couldn’t pass up the prospect of taking on this fantastic role,” Stephenson told Essex’s website.

“With the support of the members, fans and the team, I believe we can continue to compete and bring silverware back to Chelmsford.”

Stephenson will remain general manager for London Spirit at The Hundred this year.

And MCC chief executive and secretary Guy Lavender was keen to praise Stephenson ahead of his return to the County Ground.

He said in a statement: “We thank John Stephenson for his huge contribution to the club.

"John’s leadership of the cricket department has helped MCC to maintain its reputation as one of the biggest influencers in the game, both in the UK and around the world.”