With Champions League T20 tournament underway after the disappointing England tour of the Indian team, is cricket suffering from an overkill of T20?
#Cricket-O-Mania co-host Ayaz Memon listed out three reasons why T20 does or does not work:
1) Is there enough audience?
2) Is there enough money backing other leagues outside IPL?
3) If there is an overkill, is it affecting other formats?
Memon said Champions League, unlike Indian Premier League (IPL), does not have much following in India.
- If test team is strong, ODI team will be strong followed by T20
- A gap of 3 weeks would be good for players to get back into the game
- Players must be playing more domestic cricket like the Ranji tournament
Amol Muzumdar, former captain of Mumbai, also said not enough people are connecting with Champions League. “IPL gives us good dose of T20 cricket for 45 days; that’s why India has done well in that format internationally. Within 5-6 days of the England tour, players are back playing the Champions League; it is really silly.”
Muzumdar agreed that players have to adjust to different formats but also pointed out the presssure players go through now. “As a batsman, I would have preferred a gap between different formats. A gap of 3 weeks would be good for players to get back into the game.”
Memon put it aptly: “You cannot have a push button format here.”
Muzumdar agreed that the T20 format is definitely helping players. “A player like Ryan Doeschate is playing T20 cricket all over the world. He missed the nationals to play T20.”
Memon said we need more players playing Ranji cricket and participating in domestic cricket. Muzumdar added: “Players have nothing to do with the planing. Administrators decide the series. I would recommend three weeks off and tough practice before the Australian series. If the test team is strong, ODI team will be strong followed by the T20 team.”
Memon agreed that some rationalisation has to be done. “If players are compelled to play, they may not be playing at their best. The problem is everybody wants to be a part of IPL.”
Muzumdar had some suggestions: “Can we avoid T20 format prior to the test series? Is it possible that England/Australia tours be done every 3 years? Can we avoid IPL just before the England tour?”
Memon had the final word: “Boards need to work out a calender that is friendly to everybody.”
(Pic courtesy: BCCI)