Sunday, August 14, 2011

Here's an idea...

As a cricket fan, I have to appreciate the way England has played its cricket. They have been aggressive, positive and taken opportunities to ensure that they beat India in the test series.
What disappoints me is the manner in which India lost. I'm not going to talk about players burning out. Personally, I feel that they don't have an excuse. After the World Cup, all of them had the option of skipping the IPL, but they chose to play. Following the series at England, several of these players are going to play for the Champion's Trophy, where victorious teams from all T20 formats come together to win the ultimate T20 champion crown.
The concept of the Champion's Trophy gave me an idea, after I read Ramachandra Guha's article on CricInfo today. Guha blamed the IPL for India's poor test performance against England. I, myself, am not a big T20 fan, but I admit that it brings the game the money it needs to develop and build cricketing facilities and improving cricket infrastructure across the globe.
Now the question arises: how do we get players to get technically sound, avoid playing rash shots and learning the importance of patience? After all, that's what Test cricket is about. You play the waiting game, whether you're a batsman or a bowler.
If the Champion's Trophy can work, why not let all the cricketing boards across test playing nations come together with the ICC and plan a longer version of the Champion's Trophy? We can get the top three teams from Ranji Trophies, Sheffield Shield Trophies, County Championships and other domestic tournaments to come together and play competitive cricket. The players will get international exposure and will learn to improve their game in foreign conditions.
There is a huge plus that comes out of this idea. Since an upcoming player dreams of playing abroad, the level of competition in domestic tournaments will go up. Hopefully - and this is an idealist in me - people will start going to stadiums to watch domestic matches.
Since the ICC is seriously considering a Test Championship, maybe they should look into something like this first. It's certainly an idea that can work in the long run.

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