Champions League Twenty20 September 20, 2010

Champions League needs better selection process

Cricketers from Maharashtra must be wondering what Wayamba from Sri Lanka did to be playing in the Champions League in South Africa
23

Cricketers from Maharashtra must be wondering what Wayamba from Sri Lanka did to be playing in the Champions League in South Africa. Don’t tell them that Wayamba won their domestic championship because so did Maharashtra. You may want to remind them of the high standards of competition and their obvious lack of quality, but isn’t Wayamba looking like a fish out of water too? So even that argument falls flat on its face.

Apparently, T20 cricket bridges the gap between the good and the bad teams, thanks to its unpredictable nature and small canvas, but even then, Wayamba is looking woefully out of its depth. Obviously, Wayamba is not to be blamed, but the flawed system. Wayamba haven’t gatecrashed the event; they deserved to be there after winning their domestic tourney.

Champions League, supposedly, is a clash between the domestic T20 champions from different nations -- India being the only exception by choosing to put forward the IPL champions. To consider the IPL a domestic tournament of the standard of domestic cricket in the West Indies and Sri Lanka is grossly unrealistic. All domestic tournaments in the world have a fair representation of their states, districts or counties and that’s what makes it the level playing field for everyone involved. In the IPL we have only eight teams representing the country where 27 teams play at the first-class level. And even those eight teams have four overseas players in the playing XI further curtailing the role of Indian domestic players.

Despite having such disparity, you may have to live with it if there wasn’t another domestic T20 tournament taking place in India. But there is one, prestigious at that – the All-India domestic T20 tournament of which Maharashtra is the proud champion. And hence they have a valid reason to be gutted for not being there in South Africa right now.

The flip side to the story makes one wonder if Maharashtra, though T20 champions, yet lacklustre, and relegated to the plate division, can actually prove to be head turners in the Champion’s League? Let me share a small detail to explain how it all panned out. The knock-outs of the domestic T20 tournament overlapped with the IPL, and hence the qualifying state teams released all their key players to play in the IPL. Subsequently, the standard of the domestic tourney dropped massively, which is how Maharashtra, though average, became the champions.

Undoubtedly, if full strength state teams compete at the national level, our winners would not only be worthy of a place in the Champions League but also make waves. Imagine if Delhi wins the tournament? You’ll have Gambhir, Sehwag, Nehra, Ishant, Kohli, Dhawan etc playing. Doesn’t that prospect excite you?

But there might be a small catch in this arrangement too, and i.e. some players might have to choose between state and club. If both KKR and Delhi qualified, Ishant will have to choose the team he would represent at the World stage. But that’s only fair because most players are already facing that tough question. Kallis and Cameron White chose to stay with RCB, Nannes had opted for DD over Victoria etc. So why lose sleep if Bhajji or Ishant have to make that choice?

An easier alternative would be to scrap the national tournament because in any case it isn’t serving any purpose. In fact, to make an even playing ground for everyone involved in the Champions League, there should be leagues like the IPL in all participating countries with similar rules. Because right now it isn’t proving to be the pinnacle of domestic T20 tournaments, as a lot of people are making it out to be.

Former India opener Aakash Chopra is the author of Out of the Blue, an account of Rajasthan's 2010-11 Ranji Trophy victory. His website is here and his Twitter feed here

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • althaf yaseen on September 26, 2010, 21:03 GMT

    So much is said about the IPL sides having an edge with the players of high profile, but actually that is what is selling the CL T20. The standard of competition is high bcoz of them and also consider guyana and south australia both are fair selections according to akash but the latter defeated two IPL teams whereas the former couldn't even pull off a win. Talking about Wayamba they got a bunch international players in the team as well so why consider the 4 foreigners as international only, as some one pointed the teams could buy one or two international just to boost their side. Most importantly its on the given day how the teams perform on the field, you just can keep blaming the system if two teams look out of place.

  • Anonymous on September 25, 2010, 4:09 GMT

    All this talk above seems idealistic and I for one, think in the same manner, but I wouldn't give a toss about the CL if the big name players(read IPL teams, mostly) weren't in there. Leave CL, IPL teams playing in India alone can get a lot better if they fielded a young, agile and tightly knit team...but I fear they'll loose audience that way, as most of the people flock into the stadiums or to their TV sets to see their *stars* decimate the opponents.

  • Sumathi Fernando on September 25, 2010, 3:02 GMT

    Don't Blame Wayamba or SriLanka for the incorrect selection Process in India If Champions league if for champions of domestic T20 tournaments Teams from IPL have no right to be there It would be necessary to for India to do justice to their domestic leauge champions. But Wayamba and teams from New Zealand and West Indies are not to be blamed It is like trying to play a world cup with foreign players

  • sagar nayak on September 23, 2010, 7:05 GMT

    best way is to follow south African model of domestic cricket.

  • Andrew on September 23, 2010, 3:20 GMT

    In Australia our state teams are allowed to play two international players in the T20 tournament. This is probably a good compromise between a domestic competition and an IPL style extravaganza. England has a similar set up. As a result neither country 'needs' an IPL.

    I have no problem with India submitting the IPL teams for the champions league. The problem seems to be that the BCCI has overlayed a second set of teams over the state based ones without adjusting the state fixtures and removing the domestic T20 competition.

    The only area I think needs to be standardised is the maximum number of internationals allowed in a CLT20 team. What's to stop the IPL teams with say eight internationals on the books from playing all eight in the CLT20? It would be kind of cool to see but that's heading more in the direction of a WCL (world cricket league), something which would be logistically almost impossible.

  • Clark on September 22, 2010, 23:31 GMT

    CD has their top 3 players(Ross Taylor, Jacob Oram, Graham Napier) not playing which is why they look very average. CD pretty much got into the CL because of Ross Taylor(80 off 30 balls in the final). IPL teams should not get first dibs on the overseas players, the player should get to choose. I would like to think the player would choose his home club. I agree with putting indian domestic sides in the CL and maybe just the ipl finalists. Currently the NZ domestic t20 comp only allows one overseas player per team which is pretty good i think, although this is going up this year to 2 players.

  • Neel K on September 22, 2010, 8:36 GMT

    contd.

    IPL team are 'known' in other countries 'mostly' because of international players. I don't think so anybody in Eng knows about the Ranji/Duleep trophy winning team!

    4. There is absolutely nothing wrong in India sending their IPL teams for CL. They have spent lot of money in advertising the "IPL-brand". Moreover, ICC has very little say in-how BCCI/CSA/PCB organize their domestic tournaments (zone structure, number of teams, player-exchange rules, etc.). So, if BCCI claims IPL as their best domestic tournament, no one can refute that!

    5. If CL HAS to succeed, other boards have to work hard in 'branding' their teams. No doubts CLT-20 is modeled after EPL (soccer)! nothing wring in aping their club-functioning Players are sold and bought every season at whopping costs.

    6. CL is quite young, it will evolve with time. Hopefully, clubs/boards will come up new straightedges to make a solid fan-base for their teams. One thing is sure, CL can not live only on IPL-teams hype!

  • Neel K on September 22, 2010, 8:15 GMT

    I agree Akash. Ideally, each member of ICC should have 'standard' T-20 domestic tournament and finalist or winner should qualify for the Champions league.

    However, this create will create lot of issues. One of them is about foreign-players-policy.

    1. Many foreigners play in English county cricket also. If IPL teams are deemed 'unfit' for having outsiders, then England domestic teams are automatically disqualified too.

    2. To promote cricket, it is necessary to have a blend of cricketers from different countries/regions. If all the team players are from a single region, it will be extremely difficult to sell CLT-20 to audiences. Indians (or Maharashtrians)will be interested only in their team matches. Same will be true for SA/Aus/SL teams. No one in Aus will watch a match between Maharashtra and say Wayamba!! Such CLT-20 will die in no time.

    3. Presence of International players (from other countries) is must, if you want your team to be recognized in other countries. IPL contd.

  • Gaurav Happy Tiwari on September 21, 2010, 13:50 GMT

    Excellent.Along with 2 finalists of IPL, the champion of domestic T20 tourn should qualify forCLT20.

  • alex on September 21, 2010, 6:21 GMT

    scrap the IPL, and then select the champions league from the top domestic teams, that would be a way to level the playing field a bit. For example, Ross Taylor could have had a huge impact for Central Districts, but was being paid more by RCB, who in all honesty should be doing fine without him. The Champions League should be made up of players representing their own domestic side in their own country. Look at the Aussie sides, or the Warriors, all playing excellent cricket because they are units, rather than conglomerates thrown together for a few weeks each year.

  • althaf yaseen on September 26, 2010, 21:03 GMT

    So much is said about the IPL sides having an edge with the players of high profile, but actually that is what is selling the CL T20. The standard of competition is high bcoz of them and also consider guyana and south australia both are fair selections according to akash but the latter defeated two IPL teams whereas the former couldn't even pull off a win. Talking about Wayamba they got a bunch international players in the team as well so why consider the 4 foreigners as international only, as some one pointed the teams could buy one or two international just to boost their side. Most importantly its on the given day how the teams perform on the field, you just can keep blaming the system if two teams look out of place.

  • Anonymous on September 25, 2010, 4:09 GMT

    All this talk above seems idealistic and I for one, think in the same manner, but I wouldn't give a toss about the CL if the big name players(read IPL teams, mostly) weren't in there. Leave CL, IPL teams playing in India alone can get a lot better if they fielded a young, agile and tightly knit team...but I fear they'll loose audience that way, as most of the people flock into the stadiums or to their TV sets to see their *stars* decimate the opponents.

  • Sumathi Fernando on September 25, 2010, 3:02 GMT

    Don't Blame Wayamba or SriLanka for the incorrect selection Process in India If Champions league if for champions of domestic T20 tournaments Teams from IPL have no right to be there It would be necessary to for India to do justice to their domestic leauge champions. But Wayamba and teams from New Zealand and West Indies are not to be blamed It is like trying to play a world cup with foreign players

  • sagar nayak on September 23, 2010, 7:05 GMT

    best way is to follow south African model of domestic cricket.

  • Andrew on September 23, 2010, 3:20 GMT

    In Australia our state teams are allowed to play two international players in the T20 tournament. This is probably a good compromise between a domestic competition and an IPL style extravaganza. England has a similar set up. As a result neither country 'needs' an IPL.

    I have no problem with India submitting the IPL teams for the champions league. The problem seems to be that the BCCI has overlayed a second set of teams over the state based ones without adjusting the state fixtures and removing the domestic T20 competition.

    The only area I think needs to be standardised is the maximum number of internationals allowed in a CLT20 team. What's to stop the IPL teams with say eight internationals on the books from playing all eight in the CLT20? It would be kind of cool to see but that's heading more in the direction of a WCL (world cricket league), something which would be logistically almost impossible.

  • Clark on September 22, 2010, 23:31 GMT

    CD has their top 3 players(Ross Taylor, Jacob Oram, Graham Napier) not playing which is why they look very average. CD pretty much got into the CL because of Ross Taylor(80 off 30 balls in the final). IPL teams should not get first dibs on the overseas players, the player should get to choose. I would like to think the player would choose his home club. I agree with putting indian domestic sides in the CL and maybe just the ipl finalists. Currently the NZ domestic t20 comp only allows one overseas player per team which is pretty good i think, although this is going up this year to 2 players.

  • Neel K on September 22, 2010, 8:36 GMT

    contd.

    IPL team are 'known' in other countries 'mostly' because of international players. I don't think so anybody in Eng knows about the Ranji/Duleep trophy winning team!

    4. There is absolutely nothing wrong in India sending their IPL teams for CL. They have spent lot of money in advertising the "IPL-brand". Moreover, ICC has very little say in-how BCCI/CSA/PCB organize their domestic tournaments (zone structure, number of teams, player-exchange rules, etc.). So, if BCCI claims IPL as their best domestic tournament, no one can refute that!

    5. If CL HAS to succeed, other boards have to work hard in 'branding' their teams. No doubts CLT-20 is modeled after EPL (soccer)! nothing wring in aping their club-functioning Players are sold and bought every season at whopping costs.

    6. CL is quite young, it will evolve with time. Hopefully, clubs/boards will come up new straightedges to make a solid fan-base for their teams. One thing is sure, CL can not live only on IPL-teams hype!

  • Neel K on September 22, 2010, 8:15 GMT

    I agree Akash. Ideally, each member of ICC should have 'standard' T-20 domestic tournament and finalist or winner should qualify for the Champions league.

    However, this create will create lot of issues. One of them is about foreign-players-policy.

    1. Many foreigners play in English county cricket also. If IPL teams are deemed 'unfit' for having outsiders, then England domestic teams are automatically disqualified too.

    2. To promote cricket, it is necessary to have a blend of cricketers from different countries/regions. If all the team players are from a single region, it will be extremely difficult to sell CLT-20 to audiences. Indians (or Maharashtrians)will be interested only in their team matches. Same will be true for SA/Aus/SL teams. No one in Aus will watch a match between Maharashtra and say Wayamba!! Such CLT-20 will die in no time.

    3. Presence of International players (from other countries) is must, if you want your team to be recognized in other countries. IPL contd.

  • Gaurav Happy Tiwari on September 21, 2010, 13:50 GMT

    Excellent.Along with 2 finalists of IPL, the champion of domestic T20 tourn should qualify forCLT20.

  • alex on September 21, 2010, 6:21 GMT

    scrap the IPL, and then select the champions league from the top domestic teams, that would be a way to level the playing field a bit. For example, Ross Taylor could have had a huge impact for Central Districts, but was being paid more by RCB, who in all honesty should be doing fine without him. The Champions League should be made up of players representing their own domestic side in their own country. Look at the Aussie sides, or the Warriors, all playing excellent cricket because they are units, rather than conglomerates thrown together for a few weeks each year.

  • Gaurav on September 21, 2010, 5:38 GMT

    its better if two top team from IPL and one from the regional domestic league be selected from India.And for club from other countries its not fair to blame them they are respective champion and have good quality in them but haven't clicked

  • David on September 20, 2010, 22:43 GMT

    I disagree with having an IPL league in every country so much. The IPL is hardly the pinacle of cricketing talent. To my eye having watched most of the last IPL and the last county 20/20 season the english has a better standard of cricket and it's a disappointment they weren't in this current champions league. Mahastra shuold have got a spot over one of the IPL teams and it's not really correct to state the IPL sides have an edge when they haven't dominated and have even struggled against the SA and AUS teams in the comp! Sure wayamba, stags and guyana may look alittle out of depth but this is a chance for them to improve and see what performances they need to be putting in if their back there next year. You also have to remember the south african and australian sides still beating the IPL sides have lost key players to those same IPL sides and are still winning. Doesn't that say something for a proper dedicated team being above a riff raff of random players together for afew weeks?

  • Funny on September 20, 2010, 21:08 GMT

    The funny thing is, IPL is shifting more towards an international tourney than a domestic tourney. The funnier thing is that despite being such a high profile tourney and have been given the privilege of having 3 representatives 2x now, none of the teams have ever come close to looking the best outfit in the Champion's League and even at this late stage, there is still a possibility (just a possibility) that none of the 3 representatives will make the 2nd round. I agree with the writer, make IPL players available for their local clubs and then make the local clubs compete for the CL. Then, have IPL as separate, revenue generating tourney.

  • Sundar on September 20, 2010, 17:52 GMT

    What you say is true Aakash. For the CLT20 to be competitive and fair, domestic leagues around the world have to be club-based similar to the IPL. Football has the same concept for its Champions league, where all local teams within a country are franchise-based. It would certainly improve the quality of the competition, because franchise-based format rewards performance and penalizes the lack thereof very promptly.

  • kny789 on September 20, 2010, 12:23 GMT

    You've just highlighted one of the reasons for the disparity. The reason the IPL teams are able to compete (barely) with the Aussie / South African teams is because they are reduced to eight teams. Aus/SA have compact domestic structures which mean the strength of their domestic teams increases greatly (as does the quality of cricket played). Delhi is an anomaly with Sehwag - Gambhir - Kohli - Dhawan - Nehra - (as well as Manhas, Sangwan etc). Other players are just too spread out between states, with maybe Mumbai, Tamil Nadu or UP being able to field decent T20 sides. The Indian system addresses this disparity once a year with the Duleep Trophy, but a West or North Zone representing India would then be too unfair against the other countries state sides.

  • Taimoor Khalid on September 20, 2010, 11:00 GMT

    The domestic team playing with all of their stars will perform better in CL than the IPL team, because they will be playing with a passion as they will be playing for their home towns, now IPL players have hardly any affiliation or affection with say mumbai or chennai ... you look at Aus and SA domestic teams with all their stars and their performance speaks volume ... The domestic level of NZ and SriLanka might not be that good enuff so they are struggling here .. but players playing with affiliation with their teams show more fight ...

  • Gizza on September 20, 2010, 10:54 GMT

    Akash I thought the opposite should be the case. Why not let the IPL be separate and replace the IPL teams with the winner and runners-up of the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy? The IPL teams in fact underperform because of the a lack of team unity. And it doesn't seem possible to create permanent (with international starts) T20 clubs in a similar way to other sports all around the world. At the moment the depth isn't there.

    As a matter of fact I doubt that there is enough depth for a 10-team IPL each with 4 internationals playing in an XI. The only countries which I honestly think can cope with 10 teams at a domestic T20 level are Australia and South Africa. The counties in England are also hopeless as shown in the first CL. And if there was a Test Champs League or One-Day Champs League I think a similar situation will follow (but how about that, NSW vs Hampshire or Mumbai or Sialkot or Barbados in a 4-day first-class match series - very mouth watering)

  • Mahek on September 20, 2010, 10:03 GMT

    Buddy it's the English and Pakistanis who have even more reason to feel aggrieved. The IPL teams are 0-4 against teams from Australia and South Africa, teams that have lost some of their best players to the very IPL teams that haven't won a single game against them. So maybe you need to talk about the plight of the champions from two of the four semi-finalists of the last T20 World Cup. But with the Champions League being the baby of BCCI, CA and CSA it was pretty obvious they weren't going to rejig the schedule to allow English teams to participate while Sialkot suffered thanks to the political climate in South Asia.

  • Pavan on September 20, 2010, 9:29 GMT

    "Kallis and Cameron White chose to stay with RCB" - they did not choose to be with RCB, their contract states that RCB has the right of first choice, RCB did not want Bouncher so he could play for his team...

    agree about so called 'Local Team' RCB has the following from Karnataka - RD, Kumble, Vinay, Akhil, Uthappa - Just 5 of the eleven and even in that Kumble does not play for Karnataka, so basically only 4 out of the eleven play for Karnataka Ranji Team...

    We need to create a window for domestic matches wherein all the stars of Team India are playing the Ranji / Duleep etc., this will not only create a fan following for these matches, also a chance for the local team mates to learn and improve their quality of the game...

  • Anonymous on September 20, 2010, 9:12 GMT

    As a SL cricket fan, I'd hate to admit it, but Wayamba have looked out of their depth in this tournament. Perhaps the administrators should look at the qualification process for football's European Champions' League (UEFA CL) as a guide. In the UEFA CL, being the national champions does not necessarily mean automatic qualification for the UEFA CL - for the the nations where the domestic competition is of high standard it does, but for the champions in other nations it means entry into the Champions' League qualifiers. This, would be very appropriate for SL provincial teams and Indian state teams. Further, a structured qualification process could open the door for Bangladesh and Zimbabwe club teams (and eventually teams from second-tier cricket nations as well), who are currently left out altogether - if they can beat the SL and All-India champions why shouldn't they be a part of the it? The ICC CL is, in effect, a club world cup. They should have an opportunity to prove themselves.

  • shridhar on September 20, 2010, 9:08 GMT

    I entirely agree with this article what akash chopra has mentioned.in fact this came to my mind right from the first edition of CL20 was decided. since most state teams of all other countries participate it is bizarre that IPL teams of india are consider as a state team.In fact the rules should be amended so that either the state teams participate of then all other teams from their respective countries should be told to have atleast 4 oversseas players who need to be added to their playing eleven. Even though some might argue that like england that already their state teams do have a fair dose of foreign cricketers and some in australia too. but teams from south africa, westindies, newzealan, india do not follow such system. by having a level playing field this competition could be called champion cricket league cup like they have in football.

  • adnan safdar on September 20, 2010, 8:58 GMT

    very valid arguments Mr chopra,i think Indian domestic team has the right to play in champions league not the IPL teams which with all the money in the world failed miserably at last year competition and till now one is out of semi final line up and one out of two remaining also facing almost certain elimination which shows the difference between playing for money and state, normal indian domestic team would defiantly performed better then this money mad group of players and sponsors. and by the way what a coincidence that in both champions leagues, their is no representation from the countries who were and are world T20 champions, which clearly shows the main cause of this league is only money and media and not to determine the best from the goods and why India has three teams and other countries only two, its only for media to organize this tournament not like champions league of football etc

  • Ashwin Gupta on September 20, 2010, 8:00 GMT

    Superb observation Akash!!!

  • No featured comments at the moment.

  • Ashwin Gupta on September 20, 2010, 8:00 GMT

    Superb observation Akash!!!

  • adnan safdar on September 20, 2010, 8:58 GMT

    very valid arguments Mr chopra,i think Indian domestic team has the right to play in champions league not the IPL teams which with all the money in the world failed miserably at last year competition and till now one is out of semi final line up and one out of two remaining also facing almost certain elimination which shows the difference between playing for money and state, normal indian domestic team would defiantly performed better then this money mad group of players and sponsors. and by the way what a coincidence that in both champions leagues, their is no representation from the countries who were and are world T20 champions, which clearly shows the main cause of this league is only money and media and not to determine the best from the goods and why India has three teams and other countries only two, its only for media to organize this tournament not like champions league of football etc

  • shridhar on September 20, 2010, 9:08 GMT

    I entirely agree with this article what akash chopra has mentioned.in fact this came to my mind right from the first edition of CL20 was decided. since most state teams of all other countries participate it is bizarre that IPL teams of india are consider as a state team.In fact the rules should be amended so that either the state teams participate of then all other teams from their respective countries should be told to have atleast 4 oversseas players who need to be added to their playing eleven. Even though some might argue that like england that already their state teams do have a fair dose of foreign cricketers and some in australia too. but teams from south africa, westindies, newzealan, india do not follow such system. by having a level playing field this competition could be called champion cricket league cup like they have in football.

  • Anonymous on September 20, 2010, 9:12 GMT

    As a SL cricket fan, I'd hate to admit it, but Wayamba have looked out of their depth in this tournament. Perhaps the administrators should look at the qualification process for football's European Champions' League (UEFA CL) as a guide. In the UEFA CL, being the national champions does not necessarily mean automatic qualification for the UEFA CL - for the the nations where the domestic competition is of high standard it does, but for the champions in other nations it means entry into the Champions' League qualifiers. This, would be very appropriate for SL provincial teams and Indian state teams. Further, a structured qualification process could open the door for Bangladesh and Zimbabwe club teams (and eventually teams from second-tier cricket nations as well), who are currently left out altogether - if they can beat the SL and All-India champions why shouldn't they be a part of the it? The ICC CL is, in effect, a club world cup. They should have an opportunity to prove themselves.

  • Pavan on September 20, 2010, 9:29 GMT

    "Kallis and Cameron White chose to stay with RCB" - they did not choose to be with RCB, their contract states that RCB has the right of first choice, RCB did not want Bouncher so he could play for his team...

    agree about so called 'Local Team' RCB has the following from Karnataka - RD, Kumble, Vinay, Akhil, Uthappa - Just 5 of the eleven and even in that Kumble does not play for Karnataka, so basically only 4 out of the eleven play for Karnataka Ranji Team...

    We need to create a window for domestic matches wherein all the stars of Team India are playing the Ranji / Duleep etc., this will not only create a fan following for these matches, also a chance for the local team mates to learn and improve their quality of the game...

  • Mahek on September 20, 2010, 10:03 GMT

    Buddy it's the English and Pakistanis who have even more reason to feel aggrieved. The IPL teams are 0-4 against teams from Australia and South Africa, teams that have lost some of their best players to the very IPL teams that haven't won a single game against them. So maybe you need to talk about the plight of the champions from two of the four semi-finalists of the last T20 World Cup. But with the Champions League being the baby of BCCI, CA and CSA it was pretty obvious they weren't going to rejig the schedule to allow English teams to participate while Sialkot suffered thanks to the political climate in South Asia.

  • Gizza on September 20, 2010, 10:54 GMT

    Akash I thought the opposite should be the case. Why not let the IPL be separate and replace the IPL teams with the winner and runners-up of the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy? The IPL teams in fact underperform because of the a lack of team unity. And it doesn't seem possible to create permanent (with international starts) T20 clubs in a similar way to other sports all around the world. At the moment the depth isn't there.

    As a matter of fact I doubt that there is enough depth for a 10-team IPL each with 4 internationals playing in an XI. The only countries which I honestly think can cope with 10 teams at a domestic T20 level are Australia and South Africa. The counties in England are also hopeless as shown in the first CL. And if there was a Test Champs League or One-Day Champs League I think a similar situation will follow (but how about that, NSW vs Hampshire or Mumbai or Sialkot or Barbados in a 4-day first-class match series - very mouth watering)

  • Taimoor Khalid on September 20, 2010, 11:00 GMT

    The domestic team playing with all of their stars will perform better in CL than the IPL team, because they will be playing with a passion as they will be playing for their home towns, now IPL players have hardly any affiliation or affection with say mumbai or chennai ... you look at Aus and SA domestic teams with all their stars and their performance speaks volume ... The domestic level of NZ and SriLanka might not be that good enuff so they are struggling here .. but players playing with affiliation with their teams show more fight ...

  • kny789 on September 20, 2010, 12:23 GMT

    You've just highlighted one of the reasons for the disparity. The reason the IPL teams are able to compete (barely) with the Aussie / South African teams is because they are reduced to eight teams. Aus/SA have compact domestic structures which mean the strength of their domestic teams increases greatly (as does the quality of cricket played). Delhi is an anomaly with Sehwag - Gambhir - Kohli - Dhawan - Nehra - (as well as Manhas, Sangwan etc). Other players are just too spread out between states, with maybe Mumbai, Tamil Nadu or UP being able to field decent T20 sides. The Indian system addresses this disparity once a year with the Duleep Trophy, but a West or North Zone representing India would then be too unfair against the other countries state sides.

  • Sundar on September 20, 2010, 17:52 GMT

    What you say is true Aakash. For the CLT20 to be competitive and fair, domestic leagues around the world have to be club-based similar to the IPL. Football has the same concept for its Champions league, where all local teams within a country are franchise-based. It would certainly improve the quality of the competition, because franchise-based format rewards performance and penalizes the lack thereof very promptly.