May 31, 2009


ICC predictions out of this world

Martin Williamson

The ability of sporting bodies to hype their own products should never be underestimated. Rarely does an event seem to pass without it being heralded as the “most watched” in history.

In 2007, the organisers of F1 claimed a global audience of several squillion before someone noted that appeared to assume that everyone in China watched the brief clips on the evening news rather than sat glued to the entire race.

Now Stephen Brenkley in the Independent has pulled up the ICC. Earlier this week it gushed that the World Twenty20 will be seen in 218 countries around the world. He noted that there are only 194 recognised countries on the planet.

Perhaps any readers in Burkina Faso or Tuvalu would let us know how they are enjoying the event?


Martin Williamson is executive editor of ESPNcricinfo and managing editor of ESPN Digital Media in Europe, the Middle East and Africa

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Posted by abbai on (June 16, 2009, 11:10 GMT)

if icc want that this game cricket is watching by billions of people of this world .then icc have to do some graet paln to spared cricket in china..

Posted by Bhaskar Dasgupta on (June 12, 2009, 10:32 GMT)

Why England alone. The disconnect between 'real' and 'cricketing' world is most pronounced in the case of West Indies. It exists only in cricketing world, every where else, from UN to Football World Cup, the island nations consisting 'West Indies' have their separate presence.I some time wonder ICC should consider according separate Test status to the stronger Caribbean nations such as Antigua, Jamaica or Barbados, that would at least increase the number of Test playing nations.

Posted by Vikram Maingi on (June 5, 2009, 6:44 GMT)

Adding to what Greff has mentioned, England participates differently in different games. In Olympics, Great Britain represents England, Wales and Scotland. In Rugby all the three are separate, whereas in Cricket England and Wales represent one team and Scotland is a separate nation. What is more baffling is the status of Northern Ireland. N.Ireland is a part of United Kingdom but in various sporting events, its representation is as a part of Ireland.

Posted by Greff on (June 1, 2009, 12:21 GMT)

I've never heard of Stephen Brenkley until now. And what a joy it must be to read the writings of such a pedant every morning. I am so envious of Independant readers.

Anyway the cricketing world and the real one have few similarities. Look for example of the "nations" competing in Associate tournaments. Guernsey, Jersey, Gibraltar etc. Heck even Scotland, not seperate nations as recognised by many others but definitely recognised as seperate entities from a cricketing perspective.

Posted by colin macbeth on (June 1, 2009, 5:15 GMT)

Burkina Faso and Tuvalu? I wouldn't be surprised if they do. A lot of people are just not aware of the amazing spread - and popularity - of cricket. Only a few weeks ago Daniel Vettori was surprised and thrilled by cricket's journey to distant quarters of the globe. When Sierra Leone can come second in the African Under-19 championships (April), who knows when Burkina Faso (with a la-tee-doh) will step up to the crease... 'Topspinner'

Posted by Turlough Kelly on (May 31, 2009, 20:17 GMT)

The 194 countries comment is pretty fatuous. Yes, if ICC used that specific term they may have been technically mistaken, but FIFA has 208 member associations, and no-one balks at the term "international" being applied to games between teams who do not necessarily represent sovereign states. TV territories are not always coterminous with nation states. I presume what the ICC mean, in marketing speak, is that coverage of some kind will be available to viewers in 218 territories. Which is, after all, pretty impressive.

And what exactly does this have to do with Associate cricket?

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Martin Williamson
Executive editor Martin Williamson joined the Wisden website in its planning stages in 2001 after failing to make his millions in the internet boom when managing editor of Sportal. Before that he was in charge of Sky Sports Online and helped launch and run Sky News Online. With a preference for all things old (except his wife and children), he has recently confounded colleagues by displaying an uncharacteristic fondness for Twenty20 cricket. His enthusiasm for the game is sadly not matched by his ability, but he remains convinced that he might be a late developer and perseveres in the hope of an England call-up with his middle-order batting and non-spinning offbreaks. He is now managing editor of ESPN EMEA Digital Group as well as his Cricinfo responsibilities.

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