Steve Waugh in favour of day-night Tests

Cricinfo staff

April 5, 2010

Comments: 56 | Text size: A | A

Steve Waugh talks to aspiring cricketers during a coaching camp, New Delhi, India
"In our days you looked at the gym, but you never went in there. These days the guys are big. It's all about power and speed in Twenty20 cricket" © AFP
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Steve Waugh, the former Australia captain, has backed day-night Tests and suggested some unorthodox tweaks to revive interest in one-dayers.

"I would have loved to play day-night Test cricket," Waugh said, speaking to Harsha Bhogle on Cricinfo's Opening Up interview show. "I think it is exciting, brings another dimension to the game.

"People want a bit of change, they want that excitement. Why not bring that into Test cricket? We have got it in Twenty20s. Let's get a pink ball in and play a day-night Test if it is possible."

Waugh said the concept needed to be thought through, however, since it wouldn't work everywhere. "Obviously in England it is not really possible because it doesn't get dark till 10 o'clock in summer. Maybe in the subcontinent the dew might make it impossible. So you've got to have common sense around it as well."

Waugh was optimistic about the future of Test cricket. "Quality always survives," he said. "As a cricketer I think you've got to be true to yourself. Why did you take up the game? To fulfill your potential, and you can't do that by playing Twenty20 because you can't bat for a whole day and you can't bowl 30 overs. And as a cricketer I think it wouldn't be that satisfying if I couldn't get out there and technically, mentally and physically challenge myself against the best players in the world over five days."

Waugh said a way to spruce up one-day cricket, especially the middle overs, could be to convert fours to sixes and sixes to nines to get the batsmen to play more shots. "Maybe the bowlers won't be too happy, but on the positive side, they have more chances of getting wickets when the batsmen are attacking them."

He was also in favour of giving the bowlers more incentives to restore balance in the game. As a member of the MCC's World Cricket Committee, he said he had discussed some radical ideas to that end. "We talked about the possibility of getting the seams a bit larger, even increasing the number of seams to eight."

The biggest change, Waugh said, between the time he played and the present was in the physiques of the players. "In our days you looked at the gym, but you never went in there. These days the guys are big, it's all about power and speed in Twenty20 cricket. They are hitting the ball long because they are much stronger."

Waugh, who started out as an allrounder in the mid-80s before maturing into a gritty middle-order batsman and the captain who presided over an Australia side that conquered all in its path, said the present was the best time in the sport's history to be a top-order batsman in Tests, since so many fast bowlers were breaking down and opting out of the format.

Though players are stronger, Waugh said there are more instances of injuries today because diagnosis is available more easily. "You've got a million people around the side. As soon as you get an inkling, you are off to the MRI scan, which will pick up a strain. Fifteen years ago they probably would have played with those strains. But now, as soon as it's diagnosed everyone's got a responsibility, so they say you've got to have 10 days off to recover."

The full interview is here.

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by   on (April 8, 2010, 0:40 GMT)

How about just having feilding restrictions for the whole 50 overs? no power plays or 25 overs of resrictions just the whole game, simple really.

Posted by   on (April 6, 2010, 15:26 GMT)

...contd......

for instance, if a team is placed at 270-4 after 45 overs, runs calculated at the current rate would be an additional 30. it would be really hard to settle for only 300, since in such a situation, one would expect a team to put on atleast 50 more runs. the advantage would be, the fifth bowler will be bowling only 5 overs, and the other four could bowl 11,11,11,12, or 10, 10, 10, 15, or 10, 11, 12, 12 or 10, 10, 12, 13 or 10, 10, 11, 14 or any such combination.

declaration after 46 overs means the fifth bowler can bowl only four less overs, and so on...

Posted by   on (April 6, 2010, 15:19 GMT)

i would love to see the concept of declaration being implemented in ODIs. if a team is batting first hand has lost five wickets or fewer at the 45 over mark, it can declare its innings closed. a score correction will be added to the team total at the time of declaration, and the correction will be equal to runs scored at the current run rate. this total will be added in the extras column as 'declaration bonus'. the advantage?

if a captain declares with a certain number of overs to spare, then the fifth bowler of his team can bowl that many overs less, and these overs can be shared among the remaining 4, 3, 2 or even 1 bowler. this ensures attacking captaincy, allowing a good bowler in excess of 10 overs, and also when the 5th bowler is weak. it takes great courage to declare, since no team which is only 5 down or fewer during the slog overs, would settle for an additional few runs calculated at the current rate...

....contd....

Posted by   on (April 6, 2010, 13:04 GMT)

I'm not really sure about changing the rules. Yes, Test cricket needs something to ignite it again but I think this isn't the way to do it. The tradition is basically just taken out of the game and that's the whole reason why they wear white shirts and pants in test cricket.... You might aswell ban test cricket all together and just have the shorter formats being played with ODI's and T20's. Keep test cricket in the day and think of something else to get test cricket back up there again. Maybe you could even cut the days of play down to 3 days instead of 5. This makes the batsmen score more quickly and keep the run a ball tally there with the same effect in a One Day International.

Posted by pavansan on (April 6, 2010, 7:35 GMT)

Make these changes in ODIs, T20s to make it interesting -SPARE ONE reasonable LEG SIDE WIDE DELIVERY AN OVER, SIMILAR TO BOUNCER. -ALLOW A REPLACEMENT BOWLER (12TH MAN) FOR MAX.5 OVERS IN ODIs, 2 in T20s.

Test Cricket -PITCHES WITH REASONABLE SPECIFICATIONS ARE ONLY ALLOWED. -NO RUNNERS IN TEST CRICKET IF RETIRED HURT. -NO OVER THROW RUNS IN TEST CRICKET IF STUMPS ARE HIT.

Posted by _Australian_ on (April 6, 2010, 6:36 GMT)

Day night test cricket would be an excellent idea. Of course it would be limited in certain countries due to conditions but I think England would be one of the winners in this. It is not so much about playing at night as it is playing at a time when more people can attend. As for one day cricket I think Gayle's recent idea would work the best. Imagine a mini test. Played over 2 innings of 25 overs each with the same one day restrictions in place just halved between innings. Both teams bat at day and both at night. Obviously the total runs over both innings would decide the winner regardless of wickets lost. i.e. no draws. You could even have the not out batsmen continue his innings if they wish. This could be a facinating way to watch cricket. Let's face it one day cricket is fast becoming a snooze fest in the middle overs and this is why we have t20 in the fisrt place. I would hate to see only 2 fomats on the world stage but 1 day cricket will go before test cricket.

Posted by 99point94 on (April 6, 2010, 5:47 GMT)

I wud say convert 4s to 10s and 6s to 20s....Thats the only way to break sachin's record in ODIs.... hahahaha

Posted by Moreplease on (April 6, 2010, 5:20 GMT)

Well i wouldn't do what steve said 4=6, an 6=9 thats stupid. For the bowlers i think that if they bowl a maiden over they should be alotted an extra over for each maiden they bowl max of 15 overs though or aloud 1 extra fielder for there next over. An if they bowl a no ball the batter should be able to choose between the standard free hit can't get out or double runs but you can get out. An i think each team should get 2 superplay overs where the runs are doubled. Or they could just make a new game 20twenty mini test matches each team gets two 20 over innings lol

Posted by gcstevo on (April 6, 2010, 5:20 GMT)

Not to sure about changing the runs for 4s and 6s it will make a lot higher totals than past, and past greats will eventually fall off the records, but do agree the power plays need to be rethought maybe have the batting side that their 5 over powerplay somewhere in the 20 to 30 mark and the bowling side take their 5 overs in the 30 to 40 mark. that still gives discretion to the captains also making it tactical and keeps the game moving. In terms of tests I think there just need to be an incentive for the weaker teams to improve so if a test championship is the answer then great

Posted by gcstevo on (April 6, 2010, 5:17 GMT)

Not to sure about changing the runs for 4s and 6s it will make a lot higher totals than past, and past greats will eventually fall off the records, but do agree the power plays need to be rethought maybe have the batting side that their 5 over powerplay somewhere in the 20 to 30 mark and the bowling side take their 5 overs in the 30 to 40 mark. that still gives discretion to the captains also making it tactical and keeps the game moving. In terms of tests I think there just need to be an incentive for the weaker teams to improve so if a test championship is the answer then great

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