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IPL is only for entertainment: Akram

Former Pakistani fast bowler Wasim Akram advises young cricketers to focus on the longer version of the game to develop themselves.
PTI | By HT Correspondent, Mumbai
UPDATED ON JUN 05, 2008 11:51 PM IST

Young cricketers should realise that tournaments like the Indian Premier League (IPL) are only for entertainment and should focus on the longer version of the game to develop themselves, former Pakistani fast bowler Wasim Akram said on Thursday.

"In Twenty20 there is no technique for the bowlers or batsmen and a player's skill is found in Test matches," the Pakistani pace bowler said at a function in Mumbai to announce the Castrol Asian Cricket Awards.

"Twenty20 is perhaps the only format of the game where a bowler is paid to get hammered around the ground," Akram said, adding that a bowler could not experiment with too many techniques in this format.

Former India skipper and master batsman Rahul Dravid said youngsters entering the sport now had to choose between three formats of the game, all of which were different.

"When I was 21, I knew I wanted to play Test cricket but if I were the same age now it would be harder with tournaments like the IPL to decide which format of the game to focus on," he said

To strengthen the talent pool in the country it was important to strengthen the domestic cricket tournaments, Dravid said.

"Cricket boards in Asia should ensure that wickets in first class tournaments are good enough for better games to be played in them," Akram said.

Dravid also said with the increasing popularity of Twenty20 the number of international ODIs played could reduce.

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