Former Australian captain Ricky Ponting made a witty comment decade back. He said that “Formerly when we learnt batting, we were told that we would have to bat until the bowlers could take the wicket.” But the scenario is quite different nowadays. The concept that Ponting tried to share with us is quite appropriate in Test cricket. But today, we are watching and praising the new format of cricket i.e. twenty20 cricket. If I am not saying wrong the nostalgia of Test cricket is decreasing gradually nowadays. As a real fan of cricket I am quite anxious about the future of test cricket.
The cricket fans, who really understand cricket, will be agreed with my view that the future of test cricket is in danger. A genuine question naturally comes to our mind with this thought; will test cricket be dying gradually? It cannot be denied that with the recent hype of twenty20 cricket Test cricket has lost his previous place. This seems really sad for me as a cricket lover. See, any new addition is always welcome but that doesn’t mean that we would have to forget our past.
As we grew up we watched many great players who performed well in test cricket. Some of them are still continuing with the new form but most of them have retired. Legendary spinners Warne, Kumble, Murali have already taken retirement. Pace bowlers Mcgrath, Wasim Akram has bid adieu to cricket many years ago. Other greats like Steve Waugh, Sourav Ganguly, Rahul Dravid, Sachin, Kallis and Brian Lara have also taken retirement. Naturally the attraction of test cricket has vanished with them.
When we were in our childhood we longed to watch the Ashes series, India-Pakistan test series, Srilanka-Australia test series etc. But today even those heavy-weight series are also losing interest from the supporters. Many will be agreed with my view that, today an IPL match will get more attraction than an Ashes test series matches. It is really heart-aching for the supporters like me.
Today’s life has become more hectic. People have become more fast. A 20 over short match is quite acceptable to them instead of a long 5 days test match. I am speaking from my experience that people will flock to watch a T20 match rather than a test match. The media also creates an extra hype during the IPL championship tournaments and other such events.
There are some financial causes too that make this twenty20 matches so popular. As the t20 matches are watched by a large number of people, the organizers got several sponsors. Today, most of the sponsors prefer to advertise themselves through a limited over cricket matches. As these limited over matches bring more revenue, the board members also want to organize these mostly. These limited over forms are more crowd puller. That is why large number of people flock towards it.
Another important point that makes it more popular is its entertainment section. The IPL tournament that BCCI generally arranges is a huge crowd puller. One of most exciting aspect part of this tournament is its entertainment. Cheerleaders, Bollywood celebrities, programs after match, sponsored party etc. have add an extra attraction over the tournament. Twenty20 matches are also a great income opportunity for the young players.
But at the same time we should keep it at our mind that Test cricket is an art. The ability of a player is judged truly in this form of cricket and if you enjoy test series, you should not miss out Pakistan vs England 2020 test series. We should preserve this form. I also enjoy watching twenty20 matches but honestly speaking I would never like to see it that test cricket is disappearing. What do you think about it?
Test cricket is not a lost art. It is true that t20 cricket has got a great popularity but that doesn’t mean that we have to forget any traditional form of a game.