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Formula Twenty20 for instant success

Sorry dear purists, the shortest version of the game has already eclipsed the 50-over World Cup, writes Amol Karhadkar.

india Updated: Sep 18, 2007, 02:07 IST
Amol Karhadkar
Amol Karhadkar
Hindustan Times

Before the inaugural Twenty20 World Cup kicked off last Tuesday, the big question was whether it was too early to stage the World Cup of a format which hadn't even entered its adolescence.

Purists griped, and still do, that this version of cricket will only further dent the technique of batsmen and lure more young cricketers away from bowling.

A week has passed since the Twenty20 World Cup got off the blocks. It may not have won everyone's approval, but it's done enough to outdo the World Cup in terms of entertainment at least.

The impression that the Twenty20 World Cup has come a bit too early is somewhat off target. One-day cricket was about as old, rather young, when the 1975 World Cup was staged. Look at the number of games played between the first-ever ODI in 1971 and the inaugural World Cup in 1975 (18) and match it with the corresponding figures for Twenty20 (19) and you will realise that there is not much difference between the two.

‘But not at traditional form’s expense’

Amidst much debate and discussion, the World Cup reached its halfway mark on Monday. With a hundred, a hat-trick, upset wins and a tied match resulting in a bowl out — the tournament has been a bigger hit than the World Cup earlier this year.

"I think this is going to be something new, I think the tournament's going to be quite special," South African coach Mickey Arthur said after the opening match of the tournament.

However, 15 matches into the tournament, some, like New Zealand skipper Daniel Vettori, feel that the shortest format of cricket might undermine the importance of Test and One-day cricket.

"I hope this is not the future but I am sure it will be (a major) part of the cricketing landscape," the bespectacled Vettori said on Sunday.

India’s up and down journey

India have passed their main test in the tournament so far. One, that of qualifying for the Super Eights from the preliminary stage. Since India had only one T20 international under their belt before entering the tournament, even the players were relaxed about participating in the World Cup.

So far, as MS Dhoni’s views on the tournament goes, Dhoni said on Sunday that the team is quite relaxed since there aren't many expectations from them. But then, in his pre-tournament media briefing he had said that they can't forget that it's a "World Cup" and have to take it seriously. It seems that the Indian team is confused about its approach towards the tournament. Hopefully it will be sorted out before Wednesday.

ht epaper

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