An overwhelming majority of professional cricket players in England and Wales have expressed concern about the demanding county cricket schedule, research published on Monday by the Professional Cricketers Association (PCA) has shown.

This year’s County Championship will run from April to September, with breaks to accommodate the T20 Blast competition and One-Day Cup.

Counties play at least 14 Championship matches, as well as a minimum of 14 T20 Blast fixtures and eight games in the One-Day Cup.

The PCA, which said the men’s domestic schedule was unsustainable in November, added that its research was conducted during pre-season meetings with all 18 first-class counties.

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In a statement, the PCA said the research “reiterated the issues current players face, with 81% admitting the current schedule causes them concern from a physical perspective while two-thirds believe the current structure is not conducive to high-performance.

“76% confirmed the fixture list causes them safety concerns regarding travelling to and from fixtures during the season,” the PCA said the survey found.

“While over eight in 10 worry about their physical health due to the unrelenting schedule, 62% of the same players noted concern from a mental well-being perspective, with many citing the inability to get away from the game during periods of the season.”

The PCA added that players wanted a minimum of three days of rest between four-day games and at least one rest day between T20s.

Former England men’s captain Joe Root, who plays for Yorkshire, said the schedule needed to change to see “long-lasting benefits” for cricket in England.

“I am fortunate to play a significant part of the season for Yorkshire this year and looking at the fixture list from a physical, well-being and high-performance angle does cause me concern,” Root added.

“Having space to recover, prepare and improve your game during the season is crucial, and the creation of minimum standards to protect travel windows and player welfare is non-negotiable.”