Australian news June 10, 2010

World Cup 2015 likely to stay at 50 overs

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The ICC is confident the World Cup will still be a 50-over competition in 2015, despite Cricket Australia considering a new two-innings one-day format. The CA board will discuss the concept, which could involve two innings of either 20 of 25 overs, at a meeting this week with the view to testing it in state cricket this summer.

The former coach of Australia, John Buchanan, has for many years been spruiking the idea of one-dayers split into two innings per side. He believes the future of the game lies in shorter formats, with Test cricket also retained, and 50-over matches fall into a no-man's land between the two versions.

"If Cricket Australia are contemplating making changes to it, I think congratulations to them for looking at that," Buchanan told Cricinfo. "I'd support any changes that make it look more like the 20-over form. It has been in need of an overhaul for some time ... and has been and will continue to lose popularity unless something is done with it.

"Games won't finish by the end of 10 overs into the second innings of a normal 50-over game, where one side has either dominated with the bat or been completely dominated by the ball and the game has really lost interest. By being able to quarterise the game it should enable the game to have longer life from a spectators' point of view."

England and South Africa have already dropped 50-over cricket from their domestic schedule in favour of 40 overs, but Cricket Australia's two-innings idea takes that concept even further. It could also mean that many players around the world will have limited exposure to the 50-over format, which in some countries will be played only at international level.

That raises questions over the 2015 World Cup, to be hosted by Australia and New Zealand. But the ICC is confident the event will remain in its current 50-over format by the time that tournament rolls around.

"The ICC is committed to the three forms of the game, being Test cricket, 50-over cricket and Twenty20 cricket," an ICC spokesman told the Sydney Morning Herald. "We have a working party of eminent chief executives set up to look at the context and content of international cricket."

However, the ICC's general manager of cricket, Dave Richardson, last year said he "quite liked" the idea of two-innings one-day games. "If it has been trialled successfully at domestic level, it may give the trial to give it the go-ahead at international level," Richardson said last September.

Part of the appeal of a split-innings one-day game is that the home team is guaranteed to bat during the more popular second session. There is often less interest in matches in Australia when Ricky Ponting's men have batted first, with fans less likely to turn up to the game after work or watch it on television.

"There's no doubt in the world there's time for some change," Steve Crawley, the head of sport at Channel Nine, said in the Australian. "There's no doubt they [Cricket Australia] are up for it. You've got to hope they can lead the world."

The idea has also won support from some former players including Ian Chappell and Dean Jones. Chappell said the game would become more tactical when split into two innings per team, while Jones called it "a fantastic idea".

Brydon Coverdale is a staff writer at Cricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • AnasNZ on June 12, 2010, 10:12 GMT

    This is exactly what I suggested to Greg Chappell and Tony Greg a while ago via one of their CricInfo online talk show. I further suggested a format for mini tests for different levels of test status via which nations could qualify for the larger version of test cricket.

    1. Two 20/25 over innings each side to complete the test in one day 2. Two 45/50 over innings each side to complete the test in two days 3. Two 70/75 over innings each side to complete the test in three days 4. Two 90/100 over innings each side to complete the test in 4+ days

    This will be a very good mechanism to groom national sides and have a grading system for them to qualify to full test status (the 4th suggestion above).

  • Avery_Mann on June 11, 2010, 23:12 GMT

    We'll just end up with teams conserving wickets in last 5 overs of their first innings and first 8 of their second, then going for broke in their final 12. It won't change the tempo of the games. The 50 over format is fine as it is, the only problem is they are playing too many games; 7 game series and multiple tri-series etc. is too much.

  • zashrafi on June 11, 2010, 21:45 GMT

    Great Idea 4 innings in a day. This one gets my vote!!!

  • crictonite on June 11, 2010, 14:27 GMT

    40 overs per side is not such a bad idea. It should have been done a while ago to cut down on match time. However, having two innings per side is a horrible idea. It's a step backwards, like cricket does not have enough delays already.

  • dummy4fb on June 11, 2010, 8:20 GMT

    50 or 40 is not the matter, Bangladesh will be the champion in 2015 world cup.

  • NicCan on June 11, 2010, 8:16 GMT

    What about 2 innings for T20 matches. They used to be great back in 2005 - a real run fest and the players palying dressups, and Hamish Marhsall's hair that could hardly fit into Edan Park. Now it is all so tactical with the batsmen pacing themselves for a serge in the last 6 overs or so. The middle third is alomst like 50 over matches. Here's for 2x10 over innings.

  • CricketingStargazer on June 11, 2010, 6:48 GMT

    deanc, two-innings limited-over cricket would not be my preferred option, but it's hard to see it not comining in the next 5 years. I suspect though that, when it does, it will be as 2x20 overs. The 50 over format is dying a death. It's last great bastion was India and, there, the IPL is going to kill it.l

  • deanc on June 11, 2010, 0:58 GMT

    I support the change assuming the concept is that a 50 over match will be two 25 over split innings with the continuation of runs and/or wickets and not an actual new 2nd innings. However there should be some exhibition matches (international or domestic) to evaluate and refine the concept further before it is formally introduced. Assessing other comments below and considering the waning public interest with the current 50 format it's clear to see the Pros far outweigh the Cons with this concept. The one-day game has evolved continuously since it's inception by Packer and Co in the 1970's. 40 years on and times have changed with bum's on seats the reality of the situation, and although I'm a traditionalist if the current 50 over format doesn't reinvented itself then it will sooner than later disappear forever.

  • BionicBowler on June 10, 2010, 11:43 GMT

    For future ODIs I say YES to split innings (i.e. 4 quarters) but NO to two innings of 25 per side. It should work like this: *Each innings of 50 overs will be split into two phases of 25 overs. *Each team has 10 wickets at its disposal for its entire innings. *A team's second phase will continue from the point at which the first phase ended. *20 overs of powerplays, 10 of which will be the first 10 overs, with the other 10 split into two blocks of five, one taken at the fielding team's discretion, the other at the batting team's discretion. By being able to quarterise the game it should enable the game to have longer life from a spectators' point of view and fairer as conditions remain similar for both sides. No drinks breaks - just 10 minutes break at first 25 overs, then 20 minutes at 'half time' with a furthe 10 minutes break at the end of 75th over of the game. SIMPLE, FAIR and a UNIQUE differentiated cricket product of the ODI format.

  • CricketingStargazer on June 10, 2010, 10:51 GMT

    The One-Day game has evolved continuously, but people just forget it. How many people remember that it started as 65 overs per side with 15 maximum per bowler? Or that the first three World Cups were played with 60 overs per side and maximum 12 overs per bowler? Or that the cut to 50 overs only came to adjust to the slower pace of games and shorter twilight in the Indian sub-continent, because too many games in the 1987 World Cup would not have been completed in a day had they been 60 overs per side? The current 50 overs format was a historical accident, not something set in stone. The tendency over the years has been to shorten the game, so it is not so surprising that some people want to see that trend continue. That said, I am wary of the idea of a two-innings format because it would reduce even further the batting role of players outside the top 4 in the order, but there is nothing terribly wrong with the 40-over-a-sidecricket, which I used to watch in England on Sunday afternoons.

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