Livening up test cricket

I spent a fabulous day in the Pavillion at Lords on Sunday watching some great cricket including Kevin Pieterson's hundred and Sachin Tendulkar's last innings at Lords. The game was fascinating, with India fending off England's attempt to win the match.

The game sadly (for England) ended today in a draw with bad light halting play, with only one Indian wicket remaining. In part England were at fault for a slow over rate - a faster over rate would have given England more opportunities to bowl India out in time.

JP Rangaswami had gone to the game on Saturday (we'd hoped to meet up during the Test but it was not to be) and I know he will have been mightly relieved that India held out. In blogging about the game here, I was most entertained by his suggestion how to liven up a test match, which he submitted to a national paper.

someone in the FT asked the question “If you could introduce one new rule, or amend an existing rule, to bring the fans back to Test cricket, what would it be?” or words to that effect.
My entry was simple. Introduce a new rule. Henceforth, a batsman is not allowed to have faced more than six dot balls in succession, he must score off the seventh. In addition, he must score a boundary within every 24-ball sequence. If he fails to do either, he is given out for “Abusing the audience”. [I guess there weren’t that many entries, because I won the competition]

Nice idea JP, but it's just not cricket. Then again, they said the same about 20/20 when it was mooted.


posted by John Wilson @ 11:46 PM Permanent Link newsvine reddit


At 9:28 AM, Blogger Hawkeye said...

I am afraid I find myself in total disagreement with the suggestion that we introduce the suggested rule. For me the major difference between the lesser forms of cricket and the multi day traditional form has always been that the multi-day requires the teams to find ways to combat each other both mentally and physically. By introducing an artificial rule forcing a batsman to have played a scoring stroke every so many balls and a boundary stroke within another set number of balls removes part of that contest. You might as well suggest that if a bowler has not taken a wicket in a set number of balls you would add 10 runs to the batting team's score (Extras) to penalise the batsman for failing to entertain. By all means introduce such rules to the pyjama forms of cricket but leave 3, 4 and 5 day cricket as the absorbing tests of skill and endurance they are.


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