Test cricket (& cricket in overall) needs innovation!

As soon as the recent SA-Aus test series was finished, the tears for test cricket started rolling out. More than the anticipation of Sachin’s 100th 100, the discussion about test cricket’s future pisses me off – the lovers of cricket in its ‘pure’ form blame it on poor management (particularly in India), neglect towards test cricket, T-20 (especially IPL), and over-supply of cricket these days.

Some of the blame that people like Harsha Bhogle pen down may be right.

But I disagree with most of the part:

Stop blaming T-20 & IPL

  • If anything IPL has done, it has enabled cricket players to earn well-deserved big bucks – effectively, in part, keeping them away from match fixing scandals like These.
  • More than Test cricket Vs T-20 (which is like cricket Vs cricket), Cricket’s bigger fight is for its survival. It has not grown beyond a 5-6 nations in the past many decades.
  • IMO, IPL has mostly tapped the new audiences (housewives, working class) to cricket. At least from a large section of cricket fans I know, no one has stopped watching test cricket for availability of T-20.

Stop romanticizing test cricket

  • I wonder why people who tweet/blog/comment so much about test cricket & claiming it to be the ‘purest’ form of cricket never turn up in the grounds (administrative reasons may partially be responsible) or fail to improve the Television TRPs!
  • Let’s man up to the fact that sports has become an industry all over the world and people today are not looking for what their grandpas enjoyed!

Get rid of stubbornness in cricket

  • Minimal use of technology (are we living in 2011?): very few dedicated websites + web telecast is pathetic for cricket (less availability & poor quality)
  • Extreme dependence on weather, much more than other sports: how difficult it is to protect the ground from something as common as rain?
  • Rigid rules – they don’t even use the already-available floodlights in test cricket if play hours are lost

Let’s put an end to the bullshit that cricket is a religion, it should be treated as a business and every business needs innovation. Put cricketing brains together, have them come up with ideas to change cricket & its outlook.

Why not learn from other sports

  • American football sees packed stadia despite numerous high-quality digital streaming options.
  • Well-commercialized soccer leagues in Europe have built industries around the sport.
  • May be test cricket could learn from slow-paced golf & attract niche audience.

My $0.02 for my favorite sport!

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8 thoughts on “Test cricket (& cricket in overall) needs innovation!

  1. Ram Jangid says:

    I completely agree YO. Today in India, cricket is all about Sachin. This mentality needs to be altered first.

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    • No, it is not – Indian team overall has a great fan following. Sachin is the best player to have played the game ever with huge fan following in the cricket world – it’s natural for media to follow him: pure business. The major problem for cricket is that it has not grown much as a sport!

      Like

  2. I have stopped watching test cricket and ODIs too, who will waste time on it?

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  3. Siddharth Sharma says:

    nice….i really like the energy shown in the page…however i disagree with the points on treating Cricket as Business. Anyways I m happy that people are still concerned about the sport which stops the entire nation :)

    Cheerzz

    Like

  4. Divakar says:

    Nice blog Yo!!!!
    I am not cricket lover and not a good cricketer :) my fav game is Volleyball and Kabbadi. But still, I can’t agree with many points.
    Cricket need some changes according to current trend is true, all sports need that change according to people interest but Cricket changed lot compare to other sports in world.
    Cming to Technology: it’s not only for cricket whole India need to develop lot. We can’t blame cricket is not using any adv technology we r using India’s best technology to show the cricket live and many other things…
    Cricket is not grown 5-6 nation….hmm coming to American foot ball, outside America is anyone playing? but ppl in America dying for that game…as u mentioned u’ll find completly packed stadium but cricket is popular then that and many other games in world atleast it popular in Asia and Europe.
    And it grown atleast 5-6 nation…I didn’t find anyother game did that.
    Cricket religion: I didn’t find any thing wrong consider Cricket as region…atleast here we all different religious people cme together and pray commonly for India, i personally feel its not bad.

    We should not treat sports as business it spoil the whole game, best example IPL(many actor,actress and business man involved)…if its conisder as business then corruption will start and passion will reduce…past few yrs that is wat happening in India. Here, I like American football, American not treating the game as business. In America, they are not using the word religious but American football is treated like that…….

    But my request is all (Govt and we) should support all sports like cricket….

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  5. Thanks Divakar.

    I wasn’t really focusing on just India when I talked about technology in cricket. If ICC can’t utilize that millions of dollars of revenue to improve the quality of cricket (in building better facilities, & technology usage), it’s a shame!
    Come to think of it, it is in fact INDIA that is opposing the use of technology at an elementary level – Indian monopoly ruins the global picture for cricket in this case!

    It may be like comparing Apples to Oranges if we compare American football to cricket at every level – if you think of the reason why American football which is restricted to just one country manages to be so famous: it is because Football is handled like a business in the US (the point I was advocating for cricket).
    Due to running NFL, college football like big businesses, Football has benefited with transparency & professional corporate management (which was exactly my point about cricket as a business too).

    If you feel like centering this discussion to India – take a look at international sports events India has hosted. The recent Indian Grand Prix (F1 race managed by Jaypee corporate group, totally for profit) was a great success while Govt-managed Commonwealth games were such a screw-up. Let me also point you to what’s happening with hockey in India (national sport) & FIH/KPS Gill mess.
    For most part, Corporate biz has taken India forward while it’s the corrupt public sector that has let the nation down every now & then.

    Like

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