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Old 21st February 2018, 08:47   #10066
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I saw a little bit of the T20 game and it seemed to me that just as in India, there was a lot more crowd support than for the ODIs, which in turn was more than for the Test matches.
Well, four hours and you're done.

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So even with an entertaining Test series and a victory for the home team, people were not interested enough to fill the ground.
Even if the test match covers the weekend, it will still cover three work days. And except for that fanatic for whom cricket is #1 priority, I wonder how many people can spare that amount of time.

The purists will flame me for this but taking time out for one single game spanning five days is a spectacular waste of productivity.

But to each his own. I know a couple of hardcore fans who've traveled to Aus multiple times and watched each Test match.
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Old 21st February 2018, 08:59   #10067
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That is a subjective assessment of each person's equation of work v leisure, in addition to the fact that millions work without being productive in a tangible way. Take a look at any typical corporate as proof where the time taken to do anything useful for the customer expands in direct proportion to the man-hours available to do this work.

Test matches are also not run like the ODI/T20 circuses of nightly entertainment. For instance, Ashes followers have just one Test match series to follow every 2-3 years on an average.

But I agree that interest in Test matches dwindling is in sync with many activities, that similarly call for quality over quantity, dwindling in the same way. It is an era of instagram and tweets that prefers quantity over quality, so Test cricket does face an existential challenge.
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Old 21st February 2018, 09:02   #10068
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Take it from a purist, Test cricket isn't the most practical thing to follow, and it gets worse if the interesting action falls on workdays.

I don't watch T-20, and ODIs pretty much only at ICC events, but there's no denying the shortest format is the most bang for the buck entertainment for those so inclined.

The sport is moving with the times, nothing wrong with it, I can only hope it doesn't leave the purists behind.
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Old 21st February 2018, 09:43   #10069
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A question: suppose Test cricket was to stop tomorrow. Would that affect in any way the quality of entertainment in, for example, IPL? Or quality of cricket there? If yes, why?
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Old 21st February 2018, 11:04   #10070
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A question: suppose Test cricket was to stop tomorrow. Would that affect in any way the quality of entertainment in, for example, IPL? Or quality of cricket there? If yes, why?
I'll leave the 'entertainment' bit for someone else to answer, because I take more pleasure in watching a perfect cover drive straight to a fielder rather than a hoick sailing over the fence.

As to quality, the base skill set is the same, but temperament required varies across formats.

Some players can adjust to all formats, some can't.

Personal opinion only, but I think a technically accomplished cricketer would do well longer term irrespective of format, because they can adapt on the fly, while ones with a smaller arsenal will do well for a while until they get figured out, then fade away as their limited skill set hampers their adaptability.

Look at all the 'superstars' IPL has given us over a decade. The long-lasting ones are also the most technically accomplished ones, while the one or two trick ponies burned bright for a season or two before fading away, to be replaced by the next lot.

Attention spans are small, opportunity windows even smaller in T-20.

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Old 21st February 2018, 11:46   #10071
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A question: suppose Test cricket was to stop tomorrow. Would that affect in any way the quality of entertainment in, for example, IPL? Or quality of cricket there? If yes, why?
Talking of Test Cricket, BCCI has decided not to play any Tests when India tours NZ next year as its not feasible in terms of sponsorship as the match starts at 3am IST, instead Ind-NZ will play 5 ODI's & 5 T20's !
So its pretty clear which way the game is headed.
A few English players have also decided to only pursue white ball cricket.
In IPL, there are dime a dozen one season wonders who have never been seen playing again. In such formats, all it takes is a flash of brilliance to win you a game.
Frankly speaking, there are way too many games in the IPL, it gets too much after a point of time. Ideally the whole tournament should get over in 1 month but that will be very difficult due to various issues.
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Old 21st February 2018, 12:02   #10072
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Look at all the 'superstars' IPL has given us over a decade. The long-lasting ones are also the most technically accomplished ones, while the one or two trick ponies burned bright for a season or two before fading away, to be replaced by the next lot.
Sure, but how will this state of affairs change if the longer version goes away completely - be it Test matches or Ranji.

Baseball doesn't have the longer version and still thrives over a hundred odd years of its existence.

I know that the established stars all say that Test Cricket is the nursery, but if there was only T20 being played, why would the skill of building an innings as an example even be relevant? Those that want to be selected for the T20 team they are aspiring to play for would still have to be better than their competitors aspiring to be a part of the same team and would have to do all that it takes to be selected. Including being technically accomplished to be a better player than others in the format. As it is, half or more of the T20 teams are players who don't play Test Cricket. For different reasons, the top West Indians don't play Test cricket, but do better in T20 than most test match players.

I don't like T20, ODI bores me, and I would rather see a Test match on a sporting surface. But that is because of my age. As people that have learnt to love cricket via Test Cricket wither and die, so will Test Cricket, I suspect.

And now I think I recently read somewhere of T10 cricket.
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Old 21st February 2018, 12:39   #10073
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From today's news:
"Former England cricketer Kevin Pietersen on Tuesday made a bold prediction on Test cricket's future and claimed the longest format will be reduced to five out of the 10 members of the International Cricket Council (ICC). Pietersen believes England, South Africa, India, Pakistan and Australia would be the only countries who will be playing Test cricket in the next 10 years. He also said apart from these five, rest will be playing only white ball cricket."

I would go further: if any test matches will be played ten years from now these would just be the Ashes series between England and Australia.
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Old 21st February 2018, 12:41   #10074
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....I would rather see a Test match on a sporting surface. But that is because of my age. As people that have learnt to love cricket via Test Cricket wither and die, so will Test Cricket, I suspect..
Anecdotal sample size notwithstanding, I love Test Cricket as much as my father does, so I'm not sure Test Cricket is anywhere close to becoming irrelevant due to spectator demographics alone.

Plenty of sports have hugely popular shorter formats - none admittedly in the same league as cricket - but the long forms still survive. Football has 5-a-side, Lawn Tennis has 3-set matches and new-fangled celebrity tournaments, Badminton has dabbled with 11-point(?) games in franchise format.

What will preserve the longer formats, in my opinion, is the need for variety. There's fun in watching a slap-bang T-20 contest that ends in a flash, but there's also fun in watching a game unfold as it progresses tactically over sessions. A box-to-box football goalfest is as exciting as a defending masterclass ending in a stalemate.

It's a bit like reading a cheap spy thriller vs. reading literature. There's a time, place and fan following for both, and there's a sizeable common audience. I'm all for choices, bring on T-10 cricket, single-set knockout Tennis and 30-min Football games. As long as there are fans, I say let them have it
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Old 21st February 2018, 13:31   #10075
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If I take the liberty here to add my points, I would like to see :

1. Tests being the only FTP program played between countries.
2. ODI's being played only in ICC tournaments.
3. T20's restricted to franchisee matches.

I guess this will cover almost all of the viewing demographic and keep them interested. Restricting T20's to franchisee's would also enable BCCI to also enable Indian cricketers to have a taste of other T20 tournaments.

Not sure everyone (or anyone) would agree to this though!
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Old 21st February 2018, 14:53   #10076
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Talking of Test Cricket, BCCI has decided not to play any Tests when India tours NZ next year as its not feasible in terms of sponsorship as the match starts at 3am IST, instead Ind-NZ will play 5 ODI's & 5 T20's !
So its pretty clear which way the game is headed.
Bang on! I'm echoing the same point. It's only about the money & sadly Test Matches don't make what an ODI or T20 does. Also looking at the time the tests start, the broadcasters, in this case Starsports (I guess) are in favor of the shorter format for NZ tour. I was surprised when this reason came out on paper.

Also the current generation are into other sports, unlike two decades earlier I bet if you walk into any ground you'll find folks in their 30's playing more frequently or on weekends, than any teenager.
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Old 21st February 2018, 19:12   #10077
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In a way T20 might be helping Test cricket survive longer. For the last few years, apart from India and the big 3 no other nation was making much money in any format as T20 wasn't yet tried out. They were losing fans to other sports. Even players, who weren't sure about the financial rewards, were thinking of alternatives. India, England and Australia could survive because their domestic players made good money by playing domestic tournaments itself leave alone being selected to national team. For other nations even playing for national team wasn't a guarantee for a stable financial life afterwards.

T20 bought money into the game and more importantly it bought in families, especially in Australia through Big Bash. If you take current generation youngsters or kids to a Test cricket they would be bored and may not be attracted to cricket ever. T20 is like their stepping stone into the world of cricket where they slowly learn to appreciate the nuances of longer formats. Think of it what is the format that we all played as kids on streets, or grounds? Was it the longer format or T10, leave alone T20.? I am quite sure that Tendulkar, Dravid, Sehwag etc all played 10 or 12 over or whatever games before they started to brach out to 40 over format and then to the longer formats. Also T20 is providing the much required financial security to players who are talented enough but not enough to gain place in national team. This would increase the talent pool eventually. Take the case of Tymal Mills, who had a severe back injury and ruled out of cricket in longer formats. If not for T20 he would have been clueless, having spent much of his life honing his skills on cricket field only to be thwarted by a sad injury. T20 provided him a fresh lease of life. Warner blossomed to be the test player today by starting out as T20 specialist.

Of course there are problems as with everything, such as players preferring T20 leagues over national duties. The solution for this might be to have fixed windows for T20 leagues and as suggested by someone else above, and which I have been suggesting on every forum possible, end bilateral T20 and ODI's. Just limit them to cup competitions. Thereby we would be freeing up time for Test cricket and also T20 leagues. We can't compare shorter formats of other sports because a T20 match is still longer than a full fledged regular football match, the most popular sport.

To conclude, I believe T20 will bring in the money and new audience to the game, which has to be properly managed to help Test cricket survive.
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Old 24th February 2018, 19:41   #10078
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3-match ODI series won by 2-1, 5-match ODI series won by 3-1. That's a wonderful tour stat for the Women in Blue.
Today's win was again comprehensive. Rodrigues, Mithali, Harmanpreet batted beautifully and job finished by 3 bowlers picking up 3 wickets each. Well done!

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Old 25th February 2018, 05:41   #10079
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The ladies are also pulling off some spectacular catches, the latest being the one that Rodrigues took, catching a certain six. Raj is just imperious these days. Good to watch now, the ladies games.
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Old 25th February 2018, 09:14   #10080
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In the mens game, I was actually impressed with Rohit's captaincy. He managed the bowling changes well and had his best bets bowling majority of the last 6 overs. Although SA still drew us close, I think we had the best scenario to keep any mishaps covered. What India really needs to concentrate on is the acceleration while batting.
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