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Last Updated: Sunday, 9 September 2007, 11:24 GMT 12:24 UK

Twenty20 cricket - English launch
Hampshire's batsmen wait in the dugout in the opening game of Twenty20 in 2003 against Sussex
With county clubs struggling to make ends meet, the ECB commissioned research into short-form cricket in 2001.

The idea was backed by the counties and 13 June 2003 saw the first edition of the Twenty20 Cup get under way.

Matches began at 1730 BST and batsmen (waiting in a pitch-side dugout) had to be ready to face the next ball 90 seconds after a wicket or be timed out.

Teams had 75 minutes to bowl their overs, or face a six-run penalty per over unbowled in that time and players were wired up to talk to TV commentators.



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