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Time for Indoor Cricket, what say ICC?


Cricket is an outdoor sport and has evolved with many changes made over the ages. ICC has experimented a lot to make the game more attractive to its viewers. Some successful, some not so successful, some forced and some, even though they liked, but could make it effective. From times immemorial, there were 6 Day Test matches (with a day break in between the Test match) and then the idea of one-day internationals (ODI’s) was explored, initially with 60 overs a side then reduced to 55 and eventually to 50 overs.

Slowly over a period of time, colorful clothing and playing with the white ball was introduced and became hugely popular among the fans which continue to be the standard till now. After a few years of ODI’s domination, there was a study that middle of an ODI game was being very monotonous and there are lesser chances of the underdogs exhibiting a fight consistently and something needed to be done to ensure the sport is advanced further.

With some reservations, 20 overs a side format was announced, which eventually has become a huge success and now ICC is trying to expand Cricket to all corners of the world with their new product called Twenty20.

Then there came Super Substitute which was not that fruitful and then to video referrals to decision review system (DRS) to ball tracking and snicko to Pink ball Day and Night Test and Two-Tier Test System. But one thing which was not altered till date is having the matches played in Indoor Cricket. For people who are not aware, there exists Indoor Cricket governed by World Indoor Cricket Federation (WICF) and is not affiliated to ICC, started in Australia in 1984 and is now played in Australia, New Zealand, England, South Africa, India, Sri Lanka and few other countries and they do have World Cups and Masters Series as well.

The match between Australia and South Africa, in game one of the Super Challenge 2000, played at Colonial Stadium in Melbourne, Australia. ©Getty Images

There is also UK variant of Indoor cricket. Tours are usually planned according to the seasons based on the geographical location of the countries but mother nature has its own ways and many matches (be it Tests/ ODI’s/ Twenty20’s) would be rain affected. Some of them completely and some of them for a few sessions.

Typically, Duckworth Lewis having a say in the final outcome of the match in the case of Limited overs internationals, sometimes unfairly. Many times, almost entire Test match or LOI game is washed away completely, wasting a lot of time and money of the players, fans, broadcasters etc. Not all stadiums across the globe have the similar standards covers (for both the pitch and the ground), super sopper, drainage systems etc.

It is high time, ICC does not allow such loss of sessions altogether and thinks in the lines of having the game played in either Indoor stadiums or ensure the existing stadiums and the new ones are built with a system to close the top and ensure rain does not have an effect on the matches. To start with, if not for all the stadiums, at least for major tournaments or major matches.

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