Hampshire chairman Rod Bransgrove feels Ashes Test bid 'boosted' by Durham plight

England v India Test match at Ageas Bowl in 2014
The Ageas Bowl has hosted two Tests, 20 one-dayers and four T20 internationals

Hampshire chairman Rod Bransgrove says the county's hopes of staging an Ashes Test match can only be boosted by Durham losing their Test ground status.

"With one less ground, you could say that the competition won't be quite as tough," Bransgrove told BBC Sport.

Durham's Test status was withdrawn on Monday as part of a series of sanctions over the county's financial problems.

They also included Durham's relegation from County Championship Division One, with Hampshire reinstated.

Hampshire's Ageas Bowl near Southampton is yet to stage an Ashes Test, whereas Durham's Riverside hosted one in 2013.

Its next chance to host an Ashes Test will come in 2023 after it was overlooked for the next series in 2019.

"There's a lot of very good grounds in the country and they all deserve plenty of opportunities," Bransgrove told BBC South Today.

"I've always felt that we've been more than unlucky in the allocation of international cricket in the past. This (the Ageas Bowl) is an amazing venue and everyone who visits here says so."

Hampshire last staged a Test match in 2014 when England beat India. This season, it hosted a T20 match against Sri Lanka and a one-day international against Pakistan.

"I don't have any bad feelings towards any of the other grounds at all," Bransgrove added. "Everyone is trying to do the same as what we're trying to do here, which is the best we can with our ground."

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