IT appears the England and Wales Cricket Board’s plan for a new money-spinning Twenty20 competition is already on a bit of a sticky wicket.

An eight-team city-based competition is being driven by the ECB with the hope all county sides will buy into the proposal ahead of a starting date in 2020.

However, this week Essex joined Middlesex in refusing to endorse the plan – and I can see a lot more following suit before all 18 existing county teams go to a vote.

While the new idea is not meant as a replacement to anything already in place, merely an addition, will some counties see at as a loss of their identity?

Let’s face it Manchester versus Leeds does not have the same ring to it as the traditional Lancashire v Yorkshire Roses battle.

Then, if the plan is indeed to turn Lancashire into Manchester, how can you sell that to those fans of the county from beyond the ‘M’ postcode? Could you really see Merseysiders adorning replica jerseys and cheering on a team named Manchester?

There has been suggestion the teams, while being city-based, will have names like Red Rose, White Rose, North London, South London and The South which may be a way of getting round it. Personally, I still don’t see the appeal.

The ECB believes a format following the successful Indian Premier League and Australian Big Bash could boost cricket in this country and raise its profile nearer to football as a huge spectator sport for young and old alike.

While anything to get more involved in the game is to be commended, I think this may be more about the money that could be made from television rights.

We already have a relatively successful T20 competition – the Natwest T20 Blast – which Lancashire won two years ago. The format is good and having been to Emirates Old Trafford for a packed Roses clash on a Friday night, I know what a fantastic occasion it is under the floodlights.

Okay, so grounds may not all be full but crowds are healthy and the tournament has good profile on Sky Sports.

There are plenty of kids at matches with prices affordable so what would this new tournament offer differently?

Bosses are right that more could be done to enhance our domestic game but it is not just about packed grounds and TV money.

There needs to be more drive to get youngsters into the game at an early age and when they are attracted to county grounds for big matches, they need to be able to see their heroes, like Bolton’s Haseeb Hameed, in action to inspire them.

Letting the top international stars play more county cricket is a must for that to be the case.

Central contracts mean the likes of Jimmy Anderson and Joe Root spend most of the summer on England duty. It doesn’t happen in football.

If youngsters want to see the likes of Wayne Rooney or Dele Alli in the flesh at club grounds, more often than not they can.

New ideas are all well and good but grounds will only be full if people believe they are getting their money’s worth and that means seeing the top players in action week in, week out whether they are representing Lancashire, Manchester or Red Rose.