HAMPSHIRE are considering playing home games on the Isle of Wight and at Basingstoke during next year’s World Cup.

The Ageas Bowl will be hosting five World Cup matches so Newclose,  a picturesque new ground near Newport, has been earmarked to host its first first-class match.

A Specsavers County Championship match from May 20 has been pencilled in for Newclose, while a return to May’s Bounty after a ten-year absence from Basingstoke is also in the pipeline.

Hampshire chairman Rod Bransgrove told The Cricketer magazine: “We are looking very favourably at Newclose on the Isle of Wight and at Basingstoke.

“Our staff have been in touch with both Newclose and Basingstoke management but no deals are done yet.”

The last time Hampshire played on the Isle of Wight was at Cowes in 1962.

But several of Hampshire's current first-team squad have played 2nd XI matches at Newclose, which is the brainchild of the late Brian Gardener and completed in 2009.

It has been compared to Sir Paulk Getty’s field of dreams at Wormsley and its £900,000 pavilion boasts stunning views towards Ventnor.

Newclose has hosted nine Second Eleven Championship fixtures as well as seven limited-overs games, while Ventnor played their Southern Premier League home games there for four seasons until 2016.

Cost and logisitics have prevented Hampshire from playing first-team matches at Newclose before, but they are in discussions with Red Funnel regarding options for next year.

New Forest Post:

Liam Dawson batting at Newclose for Hampshire 2nds last year

New Forest Post:

Sam Northeast batting at Newclose for Hampshire 2nds last year