Hobart : Former Australia Test skipper Tim Paine has mooted the idea of focusing more on lucrative T20 tournaments, such as the Indian Premier League (IPL) and Big Bash League (BBL) and slashing the amount of T20 Internationals played in bilateral and tri-series.
Paine, who had stepped down as Australia’s Test skipper late last year in the wake of the ‘sexting’ scandal involving a former Cricket Tasmania employee and is now aiming for return through good performances in Shield cricket, has opined that national T20 cricket should take place primarily at the World Cups.
The wicketkeeper-batter believes “the reduction of ‘meaningless’ cricket would push the focus towards competitions like the Big Bash and the IPL,” according to sen.com.au on Wednesday.”I’ve got some views on T20 cricket, I’d like to see it just franchised all around the world and then you just play World Cups every four years,” Paine told SEN’s Sportsday.
“I think we play too much meaningless T20 cricket and we’ve seen this year even in the warm-up games and some other series, no one wants to watch it. You’re getting small crowds to big venues and it just looks bad and then you get to the Big Bash and everyone has seen enough T20 so that’s waning as well.”
Cricket experts have recently pointed out the dwindling crowds in Australia’s Super 12 matches of the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup, with their last game against Afghanistan seeing an abysmally-low spectator count of just 19,000-odd spectators.
Paine said Australian star cricketers should play more franchise leagues, and the selection of the squad for the World Cup should be done based on that.”Get your star players playing in those franchises and their local leagues, then pick your best teams, have a World Cup and let Test cricket be the centrepiece around it.
People want to watch the best players in the country playing in their domestic tournaments and I think if we took a huge chunk of T20 international cricket out, it opens up time in the calendar for (the Big Bash),” opined Paine.