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Balancing T20 and domestic charm

I'm both a purist and a huge fan of domestic cricket and it goes without saying that any change that makes the longer format and domestic cricket more significant, is welcomed by me.

cricket Updated: Nov 23, 2010 00:05 IST

I'm both a purist and a huge fan of domestic cricket and it goes without saying that any change that makes the longer format and domestic cricket more significant, is welcomed by me.

The Board of Control for Cricket in India is making serious efforts to ensure that the importance of domestic cricket isn't wasted on the players and have come out with a rulebook with regards to a domestic cricketer's participation in the IPL.

While a ceiling for their earnings via the cash rich IPL has already been fixed, now the new ruling states that one must play at least 60% of the domestic matches played by his respective state side. In addition to that, he must also obtain an NOC from his state association to play in the IPL. While the intent behind the move seems to be both in the interest of the game and the players, the larger impact is worth pondering over.

The first case I'd site is of that of the highest run scorer in the domestic T20 competition, Chetan Sharma. His batting is tailor made for the slam bang format, but quite obviously lacks the temperament and technique to last in the longer version of the game.

In all likelihood, he won't be able to fulfil the 60% representation criteria and would ask the Board for special permission which he may or may not get. But what would be the yardstick for such permissions, I wonder.

Now, is it really necessary to be a good player in all formats to earn your living? Not too long ago, it was the exact opposite. People who weren't well versed with the T20 format were treated as second class citizens, given that a domestic player is identified with his IPL franchise and if you don't have one, you merely exist as just a cricketer.

Now, if you aren't playing in the longer format (which means you aren't earning well, in any case), you can't also play in the format you prefer and make money. The world doesn't exist peacefully in extremes, for there has to be room for everyone.

Also take a look at the case of obtaining a presumably simple NOC from the state association — Why would Mumbai allow the young left arm spinner Harmeet Singh to play in the IPL?

I wouldn't if I was heading the organisation, for he is one of the few guys who still flights the ball and is suited for the longer format.

There is a real threat of him losing his way to suit the demands of the T20 format. But what if he isn't given the NOC? Will someone pay for the financial losses he would incur?
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