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Thread: Taking the pulse: how healthy is international cricket & where are we heading.

  1. #1
    First Class Debutant Skyliner's Avatar
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    Taking the pulse: how healthy is international cricket & where are we heading.

    South Africa cricket side are heading towards crisis as financial concerns mount

    It is understood that Cricket South Africa will receive around $US93million ($128million) from the latest ICC rights deal over the next 10 years along with $US10million ($13.7million) from the Test match fund.

    The sums for England (who do not receive money from the Test match fund) are believed to be around $US60million ($82.7 million) higher over the same period and India five times as much. Although the figures remain estimates at this stage, the gap is only going to grow as the strong continue to dominate the weak. At least South Africa always compete on the field. They need that spirit now more than ever.


    1/ With the West Indies in a parlous state both on and off the park, Zimbabwe on life-support, South Africa in decline and with serious financial issues, Sri Lanka in a weakened state - how strong is international cricket? Is our sport on the verge of being in a crisis, if not in one already?
    Is this simply as cyclical issue, or is the overall decline set to be an on-going issue that will become more pronounced in the coming years?

    2/ What is the future for test cricket? It seems like not a day goes by without it's future being discussed. Is interest on the wane - as per the seemingly accepted mode of gauging interest being counting the paying spectators at the grounds - or are we simply now following test cricket via TV / on-line / radio etc? Where is all the "heat" on test cricket coming from? Is it media generated? Is it from the fans? Is it coming from the boards, or from the ICC? What is the end-game, what is the agenda of those generating the "heat" and angst vis a vis test cricket?

    3/ How committed are the fans and stake-holders to the idea of 5 day tests played over a series of matches between nations? Do we envision that the status quo will remain, or are we accepting of test cricket morphing into something else, with days being lopped off, pink balls becoming the norm, maybe one-off tests becoming more common? Is there any will or any fight to retain test cricket as we know it, or do we accept that the powerful and mighty will do as they will and we will be helpless to prevent change? Indeed, are we welcoming of change and accepting of it as needed and inevitable?

    4/ What is the future for 20/20 cricket? In 10 years time will the gloss be wearing off? Is it wearing off already? If 20/20 cricket is the financial savior of cricket, then why does there seem to be more pressure than ever on test cricket to pay it's own way? Is greed destroying our sport and its players, or is the opposite true?

    I welcome your thoughts and opinions.
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    First Class Debutant Skyliner's Avatar
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    Steve Smith finishes 2015 as world's leading Test run scorer

    Steve Smith finishes the year as the worlds leading test runscorer, but how meaningful is this stat when he played 4 more test matches than Kane Williamson, and 13 more test matches than anyone from Zimbabwe?

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    International Coach TheJediBrah's Avatar
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    do you have a point to this thread or are you just here to complain?

    btw you sound like a communist. Charity is great, but I'd be pissed if the government decided to reduce my pay by 50% and give it to a homeless drug addict who doesn't work just because "it's not fair" that I get more money than him.

    (not saying South Africa and West Indies are homeless drug addicts but I'm sure you see the comparison)

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    First Class Debutant Skyliner's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheJediBrah View Post
    do you have a point to this thread or are you just here to complain?

    btw you sound like a communist. Charity is great, but I'd be pissed if the government decided to reduce my pay by 50% and give it to a homeless drug addict who doesn't work just because "it's not fair" that I get more money than him.

    (not saying South Africa and West Indies are homeless drug addicts but I'm sure you see the comparison)
    I'd like to hear peoples opinions on the state of the game. Not complaining at all. If you love the sport you should care about it. I care about cricket. You have delivered the usual sledgehammer response to anyone who even dares to suggest that we may be on (or not on) somewhat of a downward spiral as far as the health of the sport.

    Not a communist, and this is still a sport. Big nations (all nations for that matter) garner more revenue by playing a healthy variety of other nations. A World Cup has cachet due to it being a global event. Variety is the spice of life after all. Competition becomes a farce as more and more nations move away from being genuinely competitive. The year round cricket demands which now include a host of T20 leagues + international competition mean that some of the better players are starting to walk away from the international game. There are strong rumors of ABV walking away, G Smith retired early, McCullum is retiring early but will still be a fixture in the T20 leagues. Or maybe I have it wrong. Maybe this is all just part of a natural cycle, as I posited originally.

    Should I be shot down for stating facts / opinions?

    If anyone believes that the game is in rude health and the future is very bright, I'd like to hear that and also the reasons for this belief.
    Last edited by Skyliner; 29-12-2015 at 08:45 PM.


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    International Captain andruid's Avatar
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    My feeling is that cricket management has been reduced to a zero sum where short term returns matter over long term viability. I just want the Woolfe Report implemented in full
    Quote Originally Posted by andruid View Post
    I have heard it said that Chuck Norris' googly would literally break legs.

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    First Class Debutant Skyliner's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by andruid View Post
    My feeling is that cricket management has been reduced to a zero sum where short term returns matter over long term viability. I just want the Woolfe Report implemented in full
    I am now reading the Woolfe Report as a consequence of your post. Thank you.

    It would be great to have a discussion on the topic of where cricket as a sport is heading without posters from some nations trying to shut it down with a "move along, nothing to see here" attitude.

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    Dan
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    Move along, nothing to see here

    In all seriousness, I don't think this is anything especially unique; the history of cricket administration seems to be littered with incompetent officials bumbling from one mistake to the next, consistently threatening to screw everything up for good.

    But in the end, love for the game at the grassroots level has always seen the game through. And I don't see that changing.

    I don't think a bad patch of form from the South Africans (who will undoubtedly rebound) or some utterly dreadful performances from a rebuilding SL team away from home are indicative of an overarching slide in cricket.

    Test cricket, for the most part, is fine. Some games draw more than others, but attendances are still pretty strong for competitive matches (I mean, South Africa essentially sold out this Test vs. England, no?) -- and the evolution of Test cricket with D/N games is a promising sign (even if some purists aren't happy, and the format isn't 100% proven yet). I don't think we need to consider that evolution a bad thing, unless we get to the point where red ball games aren't being scheduled.
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    First Class Debutant Skyliner's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dan View Post
    Move along, nothing to see here

    In all seriousness, I don't think this is anything especially unique; the history of cricket administration seems to be littered with incompetent officials bumbling from one mistake to the next, consistently threatening to screw everything up for good.

    But in the end, love for the game at the grassroots level has always seen the game through. And I don't see that changing.

    I don't think a bad patch of form from the South Africans (who will undoubtedly rebound) or some utterly dreadful performances from a rebuilding SL team away from home are indicative of an overarching slide in cricket.

    Test cricket, for the most part, is fine. Some games draw more than others, but attendances are still pretty strong for competitive matches (I mean, South Africa essentially sold out this Test vs. England, no?) -- and the evolution of Test cricket with D/N games is a promising sign (even if some purists aren't happy, and the format isn't 100% proven yet). I don't think we need to consider that evolution a bad thing, unless we get to the point where red ball games aren't being scheduled.
    I sincerely hope you are right on all the main points that you have raised. Regarding the officials - the main people running the sport and holding all the power - I'm not sure they are incompetent in a sort of doddering, bumbling manner.....I think they are hyper-competent at pushing their agenda's which have little to do with the overall health of the sport.
    Has anyone (or everyone) see the film Death of a Gentleman? I have not, but will be seeking it out.
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    International Debutant kiwiviktor81's Avatar
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    Regarding the strength of the international game, I don't really care as long as I enjoy the matches I see. Am probably enjoying watching cricket more than ever (mostly a function of the BCs being stronger than ever), so see no cause for complaint.

    You can't really use SA as an example of a weakening team unless you want to use very, very recent form only.

    Regarding T20s, I see them as the premier level of domestic cricket. I don't think international teams should play T20s as it is a waste of a day. But for a domestic team who might not have the following to get a crowd for a 50 over game, T20s are brilliant. I see no reason why a domestic T20 tournament or, for example, Kiwi participation in the BBL couldn't be roughly as popular as Super Rugby.

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    First Class Debutant Skyliner's Avatar
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    Some strong statements at the below site. But is the below alarmist hyperbole, or an accurate summation of the actual facts?

    #CHANGECRICKET - Home


    What we want to do

    Let’s save this great game by calling on our governments to help us #changecricket and put the game’s global interest first. We call on the Sports Ministers of Australia, England and India - elected representatives charged with protecting sport - to push their respective cricket boards to support the implementation of a transparent and accountable system of governance of the international game, following the recommendations made in the Woolf Report and by Transparency International.

    Why is this necessary?
    Australia, England and India’s cricket boards dominate the International Cricket Council, the sport’s ruling body, which is riddled with poor judgement, self-interest and conflicts of interest, with billion-dollar decisions being made without even basic accountability and transparency. To save our game, we must have globally recognisable standards of governance to stop the ICC acting as a private members’ club.
    Australia, England and India are set to host every major ICC global event until at least 2023. Even worse, the 2019 Cricket World Cup will reduce the number of participating nations from 14 to 10! The seven smaller Test-playing nations are struggling on the brink of bankruptcy, yet are having their funding cut.
    And cricket continues to shun millions of dollars of government funding -- money which would support the sport at grassroots level and give valuable opportunities to the next generation of players worldwide -- by refusing to become an Olympic sport.
    The casualty of these decisions will be cricket as a global sport. FIFA, despite world football’s scandals, has still succeeded in growing their sport globally. But with the ‘big three’ running cricket, it is fast going the other way.
    In 2012 a report by the former Lord Chief Justice Lord Woolf recommended independent governance as the only way cricket could deal with the problems caused by the huge influx of television money and growth of the new format Twenty20.
    The report was rejected by the member-led Board of the ICC within days, and two years later saw a power grab by the boards of the three most powerful member nations.
    Now is the time to act.
    Pressure is building on the ICC with the release a new documentary, Death of a Gentleman, which casts fresh light on the hijacking of cricket, when in 2014 these three boards awarded themselves 52% of the ICC’s billion-dollar global television revenues, leaving the other 102 countries who play the sport to share the remaining 48%.

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    The desire by the Big 3 to reduce teams in the world cup is a concern, especially with Afghanistan performing so well.

    And I'd like to seee some more variety in the tours. This is the second summer in a row that Australia will host India, and NZ host Sri Lanka and Pakistan

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    International Debutant kiwiviktor81's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SuperMurali View Post
    The desire by the Big 3 to reduce teams in the world cup is a concern, especially with Afghanistan performing so well.

    And I'd like to seee some more variety in the tours. This is the second summer in a row that Australia will host India, and NZ host Sri Lanka and Pakistan
    The obvious solution to me is to work around the Big 3 and schedule a lot of SA-NZ-SL-Pak series.

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    First Class Debutant Skyliner's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kiwiviktor81 View Post
    You can't really use SA as an example of a weakening team unless you want to use very, very recent form only.
    Yes, I am using very, very recent form as my guide. They do seem to be in decline. Senior players retiring early will not help the process. I wonder if they will go down the track of preparing roads at home to paper over their deficiencies as some other teams have done.

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    First Class Debutant Skyliner's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kiwiviktor81 View Post
    The obvious solution to me is to work around the Big 3 and schedule a lot of SA-NZ-SL-Pak series.
    That would lead to an increase in the variety that SuperMurali expressed a desire to see? Or would that result in more of the kind of sameness that has seen NZ host Sri Lanka twice in the same year?

  15. #15
    International Debutant kiwiviktor81's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Skyliner View Post
    That would lead to an increase in the variety that SuperMurali expressed a desire to see? Or would that result in more of the kind of sameness that has seen NZ host Sri Lanka twice in the same year?
    We don't have to be playing SL twice two summers in a row. I personally want to see a SA tour with 4 Tests and 5 ODIs. That hasn't happened for a while.

    The non-Big 3 countries have more variety and, in total, at least as much cricket quality so therefore we have a superior product. This gives us some small amount of leverage against the big TV markets of England, Aussie and India.

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