CRAZE OF T-20
Cricked is a game which has developed immensely in recent years. From being a leisurely sport of the 19th century to the recent Indians of ‘twenty-twenty’, it has become the darling game of most of the Indian. Every Indian eats, drinks and sleeps, cricket as if it is the religion of every Indian.
Of course, for any avid fan, whenever there was a game of cricket around, it was a celebration time. However, the big difference between today and the (g)olden days is the proliferation of matches and the introduction in the form of
twenty-twenty cricket. Twenty-twenty trend in cricket changed the game forever and people now like this short version of the game. People in India are obsessed with the game of cricket. The people follow the cricketers like a zealot and sometimes cross the thin line that exists between a fan and a fanatic. On
one hand, one can recall the grand reception that the team received after winning the inaugural twenty-twenty world cup and on the other hand, one is reminded of the disruptions caused by the people at Eden Gardens, when India played Sri Lanka in the semi-finals of the world cup in 1996.
With the introduction of twenty-twenty, cricket has been reduced to just a three hour game. These days’ people live a fast paced life and no one has enough time to sit and watch a test match. Hence twenty-twenty is the latest craze as it provides good value for money. Test cricket has taken a back seat and twenty-twenty is booming because it generates a huge amount of revenue for the sponsors and as well as to the players. Not only the test cricket even the one day cricket’s future will also get threatened with the innovation of twenty-twenty format. Who will like to see an eight hour game when a more thrilling three hour game is present?
With the invention of twenty-twenty matches, the cricket has become an industry now. This industry has evidently stretched India’s economic liberalization to ludicrous lengths. We had DLF-IPL flogging twenty-twenty matches as entertainment product that sold to cricket consumers by the seat-costing anything between Rs.200 to Rs.5000 per fixture in Chennai. A season ticket was cost Rs.30000 (Chennai rates).The huge fan following and love for the game has given many opportunistic people a chance to make big bucks out of the game. Be it the introduction of twenty-twenty cricket or the formation of the IPL, cricket has been commercialized at a steady pace.
Gone are those days, when an adage “Study makes one intelligent while playing makes one dumb” held good. Today cricketers are among the most handsomely paid persons with dozens of endorsements signed in their bags. Television commercials and shows, movie industry, fashion industry and many more are eyeing the cricketers as the best selling models. Not even a single industry is left untouched. Special telecasts on news channels are covered and pre-match and post-match preparations are done not only by cricket teams but also by news channels to increase their trp. All this leaves hardly any time for a cricketer to spend time with his family and enjoy his individual life.
Excessive cricket is being played now-a-days. It has made BCCI one of the richest boards in the world but, it has also taken a toll on our players. Mental fatigue, physical injuries and inability to perform, are some of the problems that the players are facing these days. They do not get enough time to recuperate from an injury and hence their performance falls below the desired standards.
With the wholesale commercialization of the cricket, it has become an urgent duty of the ICC to address the two main and immediate issues facing this game: one, the excessive playing of cricket that has led to the player’s burnout, second is to put sincere efforts for the resurgence of test cricket which is the ultimate test of a player’s caliber. The ICC should issue strict
directions to boards to plan the tour of teams in such a manner, that the players get enough rest and time for practice. All boards should be bound by the ICC to take its approval before finalizing the tour of the teams. Personal interests of individuals should be kept aside, so that the quality of the game is maintained. After all the people want to see a good and competitive game and not just another commercialized venture whose only aim is to mint money. Too much commercialization means fast degrading of the things and fast ruining of the real spirit of the game.