Don’t judge a book by it’s cover

The MCC went 360 degrees to evaluate its MCC Universities Programme, which had fallen under scrutiny as a non-linear and detached routeway to developing professional cricketers within England and Wales.

Client challenge:

  • Undertaking an independent review of the programme to find out what everybody really thought of the value of the six MCCUs after 10 years’ of MCC investment and management.
  • Developing and implementing the best strategy for their future in line with review findings.


We recognised the importance of not listening to those ‘pre-judging a book by its cover’ but instead exploring objectively how effective the MCCUs programme was being in delivering against its overall aim – to support players who want to go to University and still become first-class cricketers – and also to find out what all the game’s key stakeholders really thought through:

  • Evaluating the operating RoI of the programme against business KPIs/metrics.
  • Interviewing all 18 Division 1 and Division 2 First Class County Cricket Clubs, plus running an online survey for over 120 current and ‘alumni’ MCCU players.
  • Benchmarking performance against other university sports programmes in four overseas cricket nations, and five sports – including golf, rugby union, swimming and rowing.


The MCC unearthed a clear mandate for positioning the programme as a genuine home for late developing cricket talent aged 19-23 years old, and a valid route within the game’s new ‘cricket pathway’ – evidenced by the fact that 17% of all FCC County Championship players, including two senior England players, were MCCU graduates in 2016.

“Inside Track has provided an extremely professional and personal service to the MCC. What has impressed me is their understanding of the issues and willingness to go above and beyond the agreed remit when required.”

John Stephenson

Assistant Secretary (Cricket), MCC