I think one option would be to have Twenty-20 games with 11 players but only six are allowed to bat, not all eleven. Allow a maximum of six overs per bowler, not five. This means there could be around two front-line bowlers and the rest of the eight overs could be shared by the part-timers. This reduces the impact of the batting team going berserk even when they are at 40/2 in 3 overs since now they only have three more wickets in hand and have to bat for another 17 overs. If the number of players was 11, they would merrily smack the ball around, safe in the knowledge that their batting arsenal hasnt yet padded up. In addition, allowing six overs per bowler means that there is an incentive for the team to have specialist bowlers rather than relying on part-timers. If you only allowed four overs per bowler, as the case is currently, then that encourages teams to stack up their sides with batsmen and relying primarily on part-timers to do the bowling.Now, Harsha Bhogle's latest column talks about how it was imperative that the BCCI, and indeed the entire cricketing world, quickly adopted the new form of the game. He signed off thus.
So too, I believe, will Twenty20 enrich 50 overs cricket; with its innovation, its catching and fielding. I do think though that it must retain some place for the bowler. If it kills the contest between bat and ball, it is no longer cricket. We must then find another name for it, like football found futsal. If we take away the bowler, the game is doomed, it will get boring.
Maybe we should have teams of eleven with only seven allowed to bat. But in some form Twenty20 is imperative. That is the lesson from the last month of football.
Dinesh Mongia celebrates recall
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Martin Crowe's Cowdrey lecture
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You want irony? Try this
Cricket 24x7 - All the cricket by V Ganesh & S Jagadish is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported License.