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Steeped in tradition and history, Country Cricket has been around as long as anyone can remember and usually runs from April to September in the UK with some of the world's best players taking part.

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Bob Willis Trophy Starts in August

August 1 is a date to put in your diary as that's when the 2020 county cricket season begins. Due to the ongoing health crisis, the usual county championship won't be played this year. Instead, we have the Bob Willis Trophy as this season's red ball tournament. Sir Ian Botham suggested the tournament be named in honour of the England fast bowler Bob Willis, who sadly died last year.

The tournament will see counties split into three groups, each containing six teams and played over four days. First innings of matches cannot last for more than 120 overs per side and te follow-on mark has been increased from 150 to 200 runs. The minimum number of overs per day has been reduced from 96 to 90. The new ball will become available after 90 overs, compared to the usual 80. Match winners receive 16 points and it will be eight for a draw (previously five). The results from the Bob Willis Trophy will not be used to determine which division counties will play in for the 2021 season.


Central Group:  Gloucestershire, Worcestershire, Somerset, Glamorgan, Warwickshire and Northamptonshire.

North Group:  Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire, Durham, Yorkshire, Leicestershire and Lancashire.

South Group:  Hampshire, Sussex, Essex, Kent, Surrey and Middlesex.

The two group winners with the most points then face each other in a five-day final. The date and venue for that final is yet to be confirmed. 


Final Group Tables

Central Group

Team Played Won Drawn Lost Points
1 Somerset 5 4 1 0 97
2 Worcestershire 5 2 2 1 74
3 Warwickshire 5 0 4 1 53
4 Northamptonshire 5 1 2 2 49
5 Gloucestershire 5 1 2 2 45
6 Glamorgan 5 0 3 2 43

North group:


Team Played Won Drawn Lost Points
1 Yorkshire 5 3 2 0 87
2 Derbyshire 5 2 2 1 74
3 Lancashire 5 2 2 1 66
4 Nottinghamshire 5 0 3 2 59
5 Leicestershire 5 1 2 2 49
6 Durham 5 0 3 2 41

South group:


Team Played Won Drawn Lost Points
1 Essex 5 4 1 0 90
2 Kent 5 3 1 1 82
3 Middlesex 5 2 1 2 62
4 Hampshire 5 2 1 2 57
5 Surrey 5 1 0 4 36
6 Sussex 5 1 0 4 36

Somerset face Essex in the final at Lord's from 23 September in a match being played over five days.


How to claim your County Championship free bet

Near enough every bookmaker in the world will supply odds on the sport of cricket but for detailed odds on the English County Championship the British ones are probably where you should go to with your free County Championship bet. The likes of William Hill and Ladbrokes are likely to keep wholly up to date with the comings and goings of the Championship season

When you have seen a free bet or particular market you like the look off click on the bookmaker of your choice on the right of the page and then the link to their homepage. Once there you will simply have to register with them which takes no more than five minutes and you will be ready to place your County Championship free bet.

Select cricket from the sports menu and then County Championship, clicking on the odds in your preferred market will put the bet into the betting slip and you follow the instructions from there.

Once you have picked the bet you want it is all about finding which bookmaker will give you the best value for the bet. Find your bookmaker of choice by simply clicking on one of the links on the right of this page to head over to their website.

On arrival signing up for the bookie is a straight forward process and then follow the various instructions to be able to cash in your free bets. Some bookies provide them with no deposit, others require a settled bet first before you can use your free bet, again all these details are on the links on the right of the page.

When your free bet is ready to go, click on the odds you want and cash it in on the betting slip and sit back and enjoy a free bet on the County Championship!

What are the best free County Championships bets?

With games coming thick and fast throughout the season, there is always a chance to bet on who will be victorious in the coming days. There are not always a vast number of markets within matches, but one that is tempting to bet on is: First Innings Lead.

The way batting points are dished out in the County Championship, a quick glance at the table will tell you how well teams do with the bat in their first innings. Always back a team that is racking up batting points to do well in the First Innings Lead market.

Promotion and relegation is always an option to bet on during the County Championship season. Often in Division One, there are a couple of the smaller counties that look likely for the drop, but that is not to say the bigger ones do not fall foul of demotion as well. Surrey and Kent are currently in Division Two and will be joined by Lancashire next season, while Division One current champions Yorkshire have been there very recently.

The real crown in the jewel of County Championship betting, though, is who will be crowned champions come the end of the season. There are often five or six teams who have a very decent chance of doing just this, so picking wisely is crucial.

What always must be considered is; how many of the county’s star men will depart to play for England over the summer. If it is a lot of them, then their chances domestically are severely reduced.

Other markets available to bet for free on the County Championship during matches include:

  • Man of the Match
  • Top batsman
  • Winning margin
  • First wicket method
  • Top bowler
  • Fall of next wicket
  • Team to score most 4s
  • Team to score most 6s
  • And loads more!

2019 County Championship final tables

Division One 

  1. Essex 228
  2. Somerset 217
  3. Hampshire 176
  4. Kent 172
  5. Yorkshire 165
  6. Surrey 133
  7. Warwickshire 131
  8. Nottinghamshire 67 (Relegated)


Division Two 

  1. Lancashire 233 (promoted)
  2. Northamptonshire 188 (promoted)
  3. Gloucestershire 182 (promoted)
  4. Glamorgan 167
  5. Durham 157
  6. Sussex 156
  7. Derbyshire 145
  8. Middlesex 133
  9. Worcestershire 125
  10. Leicestershire 107 

Tell me more about the County Championship

The County Championship may have more competition than it ever has before with T20 contests springing up around the world, but for many it is still the best form of watching domestic cricket on the planet.

The oldest domestic cricket competition in the world dating back to when Surrey first won the title in 1890, the four-day contest has been played in England ever since and has seen near enough every great player ever to play the sport compete in it at one stage or another.

The competition is now split into two divisions, helpfully called Division One and Division Two. There are nine teams in each, with the bottom two teams in the top division relegated come the end of the season and the leading pair in the second division promoted.

It runs on a points system, with the winner being the team with most points in the division (obviously). The points are currently awarded as follows:

  • Win: 16 points + bonus points.
  • Tie: 8 points + bonus points.
  • Draw: 5 points + bonus points.
  • Loss: Bonus points.


Bonus points are collected for batting and bowling. These points can only be obtained from the first 110 overs of each team's first innings and are awarded regardless of the outcome of the match to encourage attacking and exciting cricket.


  • 200-249 runs: 1 point
  • 250-299 runs: 2 points
  • 300-349 runs: 3 points
  • 350-399 runs: 4 points
  • 400+ runs: 5 points


  • 3-5 wickets taken: 1 point
  • 6-8 wickets taken: 2 points
  • 9-10 wickets taken: 3 points
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