Bradman Oration

Cricket must respect the fan - Dravid

ESPNcricinfo staff

December 14, 2011

Comments: 151 | Text size: A | A

Rahul Dravid made a solid 82, India v West Indies, 3rd Test, Mumbai, 3rd day, November 24, 2011
Rahul Dravid: "Test cricket deserves to be protected" © AFP

Rahul Dravid has called for cricket's players and administrators to tackle the game's challenges by taking decisions that would always "respect the fan." He was delivering the annual Bradman Oration on Wednesday, the first cricketer from outside Australia invited to do so in the ten-year history of the event.

The 40-minute speech, delivered at the Anzac Hall at the National War Memorial, Canberra, urged the game's stakeholders to remember that "everything that has given cricket its power and influence in the world of sports has started from that fan in the stadium." Dravid said players needed to think of the fans when they played the game, in terms of conduct, intensity and integrity. Administrators, he believed, needed to keep the viewing public in mind when they tried to handle the trickiest of the challenges, balancing the three formats in cricket.

"They [the fans] deserve our respect and let us not take them for granted. Disrespecting fans is disrespecting the game. The fans have stood by our game through everything. When we play, we need to think of them. As players, the balance between competitiveness and fairness can be tough but it must be found."

Dravid said he had been surprised to see grounds half-full during the India v England ODI series in October which to him was an indicator that there had been a "change in temperature" in Indian cricket over the last two years. "Whatever the reasons are - maybe it is too much cricket or too little by way of comfort for spectators - the fan has sent us a message and we must listen…Let us not be so satisfied with the present, with deals and finances in hand that we get blindsided."

The administrators' biggest challenge in terms of retaining public interest and support of the game all over the world was, he said, to work out a sensible road-map for the game's three formats. An alternate plan giving every game context and relevance would have to be worked out because, "the three formats cannot be played in equal numbers - that will only throw scheduling and the true development of players completely off gear. Cricket must find a middle path," he said.

"It must scale down this mad merry-go-round that teams and players find themselves in: heading off for two-Test tours and seven-match ODI series with a few Twenty20s thrown in." Dravid described Test cricket as "the gold standard" and the form that the players most wanted to play, ODI cricket had kept the game's revenues going for three decades while T20 was the format the fans wanted to see. Despite the popularity of T20, Dravid said, "Test cricket deserves to be protected, it is what the world's best know they will be judged by".

"Where I come from, nation versus nation is what got people interested in cricket in the first place. When I hear the news that a country is playing without some of its best players, I always wonder, what do their fans think?"

He said the popularity of Test cricket could be reflected not so much in packed grounds but how its most loyal fans followed the scores. "We may not fill 65,000 capacity stadiums for Test matches, but we must actively fight to get as many as we can in, to create a Test match environment that the players and the fans feed off. Anything but the sight of Tests played on empty grounds.

It was where the administrators had to ensure that teams played, "Test cricket that people can watch," and ensure that Tests, "fit into 21st century life, through timing, environments and the venues they are held in." He supported discussions around day-night Tests and a Test championship, despite anxieties over its financial difficulties. He spoke of playing a day night first-class game for the MCC in Abu Dhabi which left him convinced, "day-night Tests is an idea seriously worth exploring. There may be some challenges in places where there is dew but the visibility and durability of the pink cricket ball was not an issue."

Dravid also said that a Test championship would encourage every team and player to deliver strong performances in every match, with context provided for every Test. At the moment, there is an ICC Test rankings table but the inaugural Test championship will not be held until 2017, when Dravid will be 44 years old. The ICC had hoped to bring the championship forward to 2013 and use it to replace the Champions Trophy, but commitments to the broadcaster and sponsors meant that could not be done. Dravid said he was against the idea of scrapping ODIs altogether but believed that events like the World Cup and the Champions Trophy should be the focus, with other ODIs contributing to rankings for those events.

"Since about, I think 1985, people have been saying that there is too much meaningless one-day cricket," he said. "Maybe it's finally time to do something about it ... Anything makes more sense than seven-match ODI series." More context for matches might also help draw crowds back to the game. Dravid said he had been surprised to see the lack of spectators at an ODI series featuring India this year and he described the sight of empty stands as "alarming".

Dravid said that even if fans were watching on television, the experience was not the same. And that, he argued, could have consequences in the long term. "Whatever the reasons are - maybe it is too much cricket or too little by way of comfort for spectators. The fan has sent us a message and we must listen. This is not mere sentimentality. Empty stands do not make for good television. Bad television can lead to a fall in ratings, the fall in ratings will be felt by media planners and advertisers' looking elsewhere.

"If that happens, it is hard to see television rights around cricket being as sought after as they have always been in the last 15 years. And where does that leave everyone?"

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by IndiaNumeroUno on (December 17, 2011, 11:57 GMT)

Didn't realise that Indians and Australians fought together in the World War. Well.. I knew that we were in the Allied forces.. but they way Dravid put it, just makes it so much more touching!

Also, really impressed by Andrew Symonds in the Indian version of Big Brother.. top guy!!... can't believe I'm warming to Aussies!! (will it all change when the cricket begins?! LOL!... hope not)

Posted by Mani_CricketFan on (December 16, 2011, 13:31 GMT)

Great speech by Mr. Wall. As far as cricket is concerned, not many people have time to watch and pay money for it. It would be much better if the scores are updated on facebook as currently it is doing a better job of keeping us refreshing. Also, include middle class people in cricket so that they can also earn money a little bit. Not just players and politicians who are just becoming rich.

Posted by   on (December 16, 2011, 2:10 GMT)

And fans respect Dravid for saying that. Respect, respect. *thumbs up*

Posted by   on (December 15, 2011, 23:12 GMT)

Wow- what a Speech, The Great Wall~ I always wonder how a test cricket is still stand at Gold stage for all cricket lovers~ as an Indian I believe test cricket is like a indian movie which, has *drama,dance, action, nail biting suspense and happy ending moments of each great test match played till Now~ Cheers~ hope for great series ahead~!! Enjoy:)

Posted by Shan156 on (December 15, 2011, 20:53 GMT)

@the_wallster, I hear you and I have the same views as you. But, sub-continent fans love ODIs. Besides, the Aussies are not doing well in test cricket and may claim that ODIs are the premier format since it is the one format in which they are ranked #1 (although it won't be long since India will soon be taking over):-) As @soumyas says, it would not be correct to scrap the format. Instead, cutting down on ODIs (perhaps 3 ODIs per series) would be the correct approach. 7 ODIs, as most people would agree, is ridiculous. And, no, this has got nothing to do with England losing four 7 ODI series 1-6:-)

Posted by new_samrat on (December 15, 2011, 19:57 GMT)

SIR RAHUL DRAVID, Great speech by a great and true gentleman of the game. What a humble cricketer RD is. His speech and voice tells the story of what RD is. The current and future generation of cricketers should hear this speech and learn from it.

Very well done RD. You really are a "Gem of a Person". We are proud of you as an Indian. We will look forward to your services to Indian cricketing world for many many more years. There will never be another RD again.

Wish you all the success in your Aussie tour. Hats off to you SIR. In my opinion you deserve to be called a Sir.

Posted by bumsonseats on (December 15, 2011, 19:37 GMT)

A.AK.if you believe that the indian supporters believed that they did not bother if they won or lost, think again. we would not have got all the excuses under the sun on the various column inches given on that defeat.

Posted by Dalajit on (December 15, 2011, 17:35 GMT)

True...very much true...Dravid said correct. I think the administrator should listen this carefully and take some wise decision in favor of fans who spends money and comes to watch the match live. It is high time now that BCCI still thinking about big money from telecast rights other Ads revenue including stadium income. Why they don't make the tickets economical for fans and make some comfort in stadium like in Aus, South Africa. Their income are good enough from other revenue so should consider the reasonable price for tickets as well should organize matches in small locality than repeating always in Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai, B'lore etc. They are able to watch so much cricket that it is difficult them to come again and again where as small locality fans are desperate to watch live international match but unable to watch frequently. So, why this injustice for small grounds...small locality fans. Wake up BCCI...

Posted by   on (December 15, 2011, 16:37 GMT)

rare and marvelous speech by wall

Posted by A.Ak on (December 15, 2011, 16:19 GMT)

After watching too much t20 cricket, fans must have thought to see a test cricket in t20 pace. I guess, with proper cricketers like Dravid, VVS, Indian fans cant stay and watch the game. they prefer Shewag, Sachin or Dhoni play a quick fire 50 and leave the ground afterwards. When India toured England this year, many fans only want to see Sachin's hundred, many didnt bother about India winning or losing. Poor Dravid. He scored only 3 runs per over, but so called stars, who media called "crowd pullers", failed to score runs at all.

Posted by SpeedCricketThrills on (December 15, 2011, 16:05 GMT)

@Mohammed Nasir - if a revenue model has been 'discovered' why screw it up? The money can be put to god use (which may not be happening!) to make the game bigger.

@drdreddy_gy - don't imagine things. It is normal for cricketers to discourage fans invading the pitch to congratuate. When I was a teenager, has happened many times. Showing the bat means "go and sit in the stand, don't disturb'. --------

@ashok16 - Test cricket needs innovation. A team has to be judged on 2 innings, not just one - just as we have 3 or 5 sets in many sports and other parallels in other sports. Each day can and should be made interesting. Nobody asks you to watch all 5 days, but enjoy the one day you may spare. If that too doesn't interest you, you shouldn't be wasting time here! ---------

@Lillian - We are discussing Dravid's speech here. Where did Sangakkara come from?

Posted by   on (December 15, 2011, 15:44 GMT)


Rahul is standing like a WALL and not chasing the ball. His fielding is pathetic except when he is in the slips. There is a time when someone has to Hang his Boots. Rahul Dravid is getting Bowled and LBW more often and can no longer be termed the WALL.

Posted by   on (December 15, 2011, 15:39 GMT)

1000% agreed with Dravid. Infact if ICC want to save the future of Test Cricket which is real cricket than it has to get rid of ODI's. Two versions are enough Test Cricket and T20. Otherwise ODI will some how survive but test cricket will be destroyed.

Posted by   on (December 15, 2011, 15:29 GMT)

Sameeru: There is a time when a Batsman has to hang his boots.

Wait and watch how Rahul Dravid Stands like a WALL instead of chasing the ball and fielding it. His fielding is pathetic last few years. Last few years the way he has got Bowled or LBW he can no longer be termed as WALL.

Posted by   on (December 15, 2011, 15:10 GMT)

my icon RAHUL DRAVID. i just love him. love his batting, love his, personallity, love his passion, love his spirit. from the childhood i follow his batting on my way of batting style. JAHEDUL HOQUE VIKI, dhaka, BANGLADESH.

Posted by zico123 on (December 15, 2011, 15:07 GMT)

India-pakistan bileteral seroes would draw more crowd than stupid IPL, IPl should be reduced to 2 week event and India-pakistan bileteral seroes should go ahead

Posted by zico123 on (December 15, 2011, 15:06 GMT)

it is IPL which is causing viewer fatigue, it is cricket overkill, IPL should be reduced to 2 week event at the most.

Posted by flairplay on (December 15, 2011, 15:05 GMT)

Thank you so much Cricinfo for providing us with the video of Rahul Dravid's speech. The speech can be described as enriching, entertaining, educating and exquisite to say the least. It was poignant,thoughtful , providing a rare insight into the game,its history and its structure in India. The anecdote regarding the under-19 players stitching together a 100 run partnership the communication handicap notwithstanding succinctly depicted what india is all about. In fact his speech can be likened to his batting in many ways. He did mention the epic 2001 series against Australia which is now part of cricketing folklore where the blue print of a resurgent India was drawn. But he chose not to mention his role in it. His speech was peppered with just the right dose of humour just as he chips in with a wristy flick to the fine leg or launches on to a delightful bended knees cover drive while building an otherwise solid innings quite true to his sobriquet ---- 'the wall'

Posted by   on (December 15, 2011, 14:14 GMT)

"Cricket must respect the fan" How convenient is this statement.

Dravid stop half way through & didn't state the fact which is to say "Cricketer must respect the Fan". After retiring from ODI is easy to say that stop mindless ODI. Why stop there, why not go the complete yards & say that stop the evil of IPL. If we have to point to the main culprit for the so called too much Cricket then surely all finger must point towards IPL. But Dravid won't say anything against IPL because is going to be the Captain of Rajasthan Royals next season.

Mr. Cricket respect the fan by first seeking a stoppage to IPL & other Leagues like it & only then ask for reduction to ODI. Do remember that a loyal fan of cricket will always watch Cricket (Test & ODI) because there is a battle between bat & ball unlike IPL where the battle is amongst the batsmen to outscore the others.

Posted by HALFBACKSOFWC on (December 15, 2011, 13:54 GMT)

First of all, I would like to Congratulate the legendary Dravid for being the first foreigner to deliver a speech on Bradman's day. As all of you say, it is the overdose of cricket and partly due to towering ticket prices. I think it is high time for the BCCI to realize this issue and ensure that there is overdose of ODIs and T20s.

Posted by drdreddy_gy on (December 15, 2011, 13:49 GMT)

It is interesting to see Rahul Dravid saying this. HE talks about "respect the fan", but I remember an ugly incident involving Dravid in 2002 during the test match against West Indies in Guyana. There was no respect to an Indian-Guyanese fan when he refused to shake hands with a spectator and showed him the bat calling him an "untouchable"

Posted by Dr.Vindaloo on (December 15, 2011, 13:42 GMT)

@Suresh Thondamuthur, I watched Dravid carry his bat at the Oval in August. He scored at less than three an over but with the 'big guns' being knocked over like nine-pins all around him everyone in the ground could appreciate that it was a monumental innings. I will remember that innings for a very long time, unlike a breezy fifty from a flimsy 'entertainer' like Yuvraj. If you don't understand that a gritty innings in challenging conditions is what test cricket is all about then I suggest you stick with the pyjama game.

Posted by sabee66 on (December 15, 2011, 13:15 GMT)

as a Pakistani born Australian , i admire him as a good cricketer but Australian and Australia are the best

Posted by   on (December 15, 2011, 13:10 GMT)

If good Speeches make a gr8 cricketer then harsh bogle would have been the greatest cricketer of all time. :-)

Posted by AndyDingley on (December 15, 2011, 13:02 GMT)

From an English perspective, I think it is true to say that both Dravid and Sangakarra hold the most respected opinions in world cricket. Both think the current situation is unsustainable. We hold our game only temporarily, so that we can gift it to future generations, but the BCCI and ICC seem to want to rape it for every penny, rupee, rand or dollar they can get.

I am very saddened and worried about the game I love. Dravid is spot on and must be listened to before it is too late, and cricket is viewed only on YouTube.

The warning is clear.

Posted by sameeru on (December 15, 2011, 12:48 GMT)

Suresh Thondamuthur - do us a favor and watch only T20 crap if you can't stand the Wall. India has been blessed to have such a gentleman serve the country in the age of brashness in cricket.

Test cricket is not about scoring 10 runs an over. it is like a boxing match where you take punches and deliver the knockout blow. Dravid takes the punches for the team. only he stood between 4 innings defeats in England.

to attribute the lack of public to Dravid is outright childishness.

Posted by   on (December 15, 2011, 10:49 GMT)

If Rahul Dravid is going to score at 3 runs an over and at end of Day 1 if India are going to be say 220 for 3 wickets which Cricket fan is going to sit in the stands ???

If Bowlers do not bowl on the leg stump and Rahul Dravid cannot flick to the leg side then it run rate cold be 2 runs per over!

Posted by aq111 on (December 15, 2011, 10:46 GMT)

I'm an England supporter but Rahul Dravid has long been my favourite "Thinking" Cricketer. A great ambassador for our game.

Posted by LuvThyGame on (December 15, 2011, 10:21 GMT)

I think there are quite a few issues leading to this situation

1. Firstly, to entice fans we need competitive cricket. Not all teams play great cricket today - Aus, SA, India and Eng (in that order) seem to be only ones that create some excitement. SL brand of cricket is extremely boring and they are hollow without Murali. WI is no better than a good county team. Pak is rebuilding but missing star appeal.. Bang and Zim dont deserve to be playing at this level

2. People keep complaining that administrators have failed cricket by not spreading it globally. Well, fans would not turn up if there is no quality at display. You dont want a popular game played by bunch of amateurs. People should accept the reality that cricket is destined to be played competitively by only 5-6 nations, who take it very seriously. Look at baseball. Americans didnt go overdrive to make it a global sport, although an average adult spends 2 hours of his daily life watching it !

Posted by anki10688 on (December 15, 2011, 10:02 GMT)

Being the seats empty i think due to overload of cricket it should be shortend, and IPL length also should be shortend so tat our key players dont get injured. I think IPL is only for finding the young talents not for established cricketers.

Posted by SuperSharky on (December 15, 2011, 9:32 GMT)

Hoor, hoor !!! Brilliant and wise comments from one of crickets all-time legends, Rahul Dravid (The Wall). Give the player and the spectator a routine fixture of the perfect balance between a Test series, ODI series and a 20/twenty game.

Posted by veerakannadiga on (December 15, 2011, 8:25 GMT)

The first cricketer from outside Australia invited to do so in the ten-year history of the event............ that speaks volumes about RD's greatness.

Posted by   on (December 15, 2011, 8:01 GMT)

RD is always a good thought leader. Wish he had been a captain for more time especially in tests (nothing against Dhoni).

BTW, I think RD's speech is a message to BCCI only. Day-night tests matches and 2-25 over innings ODI's are a must for the future. We fans should demand for this.

Posted by   on (December 15, 2011, 7:28 GMT)

.....and to save cricket i will suggest that the no. of T20s in a year must be minimum and their must be some tours arranged comprising only of tests. if t20s are arranged in a tour against any team then their must be a single match, not exceed from 1, otherwise i think T20 world cup is enough for entertainment which comes after every 2 years. ODIs should not be ignored as they have added much to save cricket. Remember in 1971 and earlier when people were not taking interest in 7-day matches. Only ODIs gave life to cricket. ...and ICC must work hard to arrange Test Championship as early as possible in a country like England where pitches are nice (not dead or completely belong to Batsmen) and the match mostly ends within a period of five days

Posted by   on (December 15, 2011, 7:28 GMT)

Rahul Dravid has shown that he is not only the WALL but also a Cricketing statesman who can lead the World Cricket into glory.

Posted by   on (December 15, 2011, 7:21 GMT)

the cricket was so successful in yesteryears was because the team use to visit each other nation after a gap of say year and half.... but today the team visit nations immediately after concluding a series recent example to be sited is India vs england where india visited england and immediately england visited india for ODI thats was the downfall for the series........ therefore that create lack of competition in the players

Posted by ashok16 on (December 15, 2011, 7:18 GMT)

Safe speech by Dravid. Avoided key issue: test cricket is interesting to follow but nobody (atleast not enough to sustain by itself) wants to watch. Saying test cricket is the "gold standard" is not going to get us anywhere. Lives are getting faster, nobody is going to sit on a test ground on a thursday in India and watch nothing much happen. test cricket needs to become faster without losing its essence (bowling to take wickets and not to contain runs). Unless a solution is found cricket is going to be eaten for lunch by other sports.

Posted by   on (December 15, 2011, 7:10 GMT)

i dont think india cricket needs to attract fans to its stadiums. i m noticing that crowd capacity in the recent few years was best in india. . England have been on top in collecting the crowd even in neutral matches because every foreign team has got big support for them in England. . the rest of the countries specially Australia, South Africa must focus on this issue because time by time their stadiums are becoming vacant. Rest of the countries too. But i repeat "INDIA and ENGLAND have got the most number of cricket FANS who like to come to the stadium and enjoy LIVE GAME"

Posted by CRICKETRAJAN on (December 15, 2011, 6:58 GMT)

Well done Rahul Dravid !!

I know " walls have ears " and one can't talk to the " wall "

But here " The wall " has spoken so very well !!

Congrats Rahul !

We are back to the "Wall ""

Dr G .Nadarajan , Dubai

Posted by ManjunathMC on (December 15, 2011, 6:57 GMT)

Wonderful lines from a True Gentleman...

After a long time an article on Cricket fans...

Rahul all the best for the Aus series...

Posted by sunnu308 on (December 15, 2011, 6:48 GMT)

problem with empty stands in test matches is venues they are conduced. I remember watching India vs Australia in mohali 2008 even India (Sachin) was batting but stands were empty is because mohali is known for hosting more ODI's. If the same match has been played in Mumbai, Bangalore or Chennai you can expect 80% of stands full. They must give test matches to venues where people really enjoy watching it.

Posted by   on (December 15, 2011, 6:35 GMT)

Rightly said master............ Test championship would encourage every team and player to deliver strong performances in every match, with context provided for every Test and it improves every batsmen skill.....

Posted by crickprof on (December 15, 2011, 6:28 GMT)

RD was a talented player, but BCCI must give the chance now to the young players, tendulkar, dravid, laxman they are now old fellows....

Posted by   on (December 15, 2011, 6:04 GMT)

he things alot about himself

Posted by Sakthiivel on (December 15, 2011, 6:01 GMT)

@Seymore Butt : We all know how eden supported India during Chappels period. They totally going against india and supported SA. Whole India will not forget Eden and its crowd.

Posted by Clyde on (December 15, 2011, 6:01 GMT)

I am a follower of Test cricket.

Posted by sabina2009 on (December 15, 2011, 5:59 GMT)

Nothing beats TEST Match. Test match will live on forever. It is time for ICC to think seriously in promoting TEST match.

Posted by   on (December 15, 2011, 5:44 GMT)

what a player he is. guys like sanga, dravid kallis are really good examples for the game. new comers like raina, kohli even the sings like yuvi, bhaji should learn from these legends how to be simple in the game and still be a match winner

Posted by alltimegreat on (December 15, 2011, 5:43 GMT)

The perfect gentleman of Cricket speaking the true facts of whats happening to Cricket right now. Hope all boards are listening especially BCCI!!!

Posted by India_boy on (December 15, 2011, 5:28 GMT)

RD is not completely against ODI as sum of u hv concluded from this speech.In fact he did raise a couple of vry strong and valid points in favor of ODI such as "fielding standards hv improvd since the advent of ODI" and that "new shots have been invented that became a part of test cricket". None of us cn undermine the importance of ODI in making cricket enjoyable and entertaining.if it wasnt for ODI, tel me how many of u might have been njoying cricket with family and frenz?how many of u wud go 2 places like India Gate/Gateway of India or famous places in your respective countries when ur team won the WC???Close your eyes and recall the moments of madness when you were a part of a crowd of 50,000 people enjoying your country's victory in the WC.ODIs have given us moments that not even test cricket could provide. But yes,bilateral ODIs have become totally meaningless,specialy since 99 WC. PS:M a hardcore Dravid fan but stil think Sanga's speech ws b8r as it came straight from the heart

Posted by shanmugham_ump_tpt. on (December 15, 2011, 5:21 GMT)

it was a superb speech by the GREAT WALL OF INDIAN CRICKET. his comments made indian cricket fan proud.

Posted by   on (December 15, 2011, 5:15 GMT)

Testing Ignore!

I agree completely with Dravid! But what some of the "Fans" are missing is that the central bodies govern the TV/Media rights and hand these out to the grounds/stadia as and when the see fit and each ground/stadia competes for Test/ODI's etc so the stadia have to charge high prices to recover the fees they have outlayed to "Host" the Test/ODI's etc (Or at least thats how it is in UK!). Therefore Stadia will always charge whatever is needed to recoup those losses from the public who want to watch it live! So the argument to fill stadia (at least in the UK!) will be to stop this ridiculous "Trendering" for International matches so that stadia all compete or get rotational matches and so spectators can enjoy reduced or "Normal" ticket prices! Why should fans have to pay extra b'cos match is held in Cardiff rather than The Oval? And along with travel costs it simply doesn't make sense??

Posted by vbkrish on (December 15, 2011, 5:07 GMT)

Congrats Dravid for being the first foreign player to deliver the Sir Bradman Oration in Australia.As Sanjay Manjrekar said that obsession of Sachin Tendulkar is only in India whereas For Rahul Dravid there is a great respect abroad.Here, both electronic and print media discuss only about not scoring the 100th century by Sachin but the centuries scored by Dravid are sidelined. Some of the points raised by Dravid are worth to be noted by the Cricket boards.Having only 2 Test matches between SA & Australia and between NZ & Australia or 7 ODI's between two countries are not good planning.Playing all the formats at the same centre that too with abnormal entry fees is bad. Earlier it happened in Nagpur and this time it was in Kolkatta.As Dravid stressed, FANS should be treated with respect by providing the basic facilities.Money minting Boards should wake up atleast now.

Posted by   on (December 15, 2011, 5:03 GMT)

Good one. Keep it going Dravid..

Posted by Deepak9 on (December 15, 2011, 4:53 GMT)

Till Player Like you are on the field, True Fan of Cricket will never be disappointed by the result. """"""We Want to see 100% Commitment from the Players On the Field""""""""That's all what we Want during watching any Format of Cricket. And Most important People are still very much crazy about the game,,,,,,,,its only poor facilities and lack of management that's keeping fans out of stadiums

Posted by   on (December 15, 2011, 4:37 GMT)

I sharma has broken down.... I pathan will replace him for sure

Posted by   on (December 15, 2011, 4:32 GMT)

Hopefully, the empty Eden Gardens for the India-England test would have made a point to the organizers/administrators the mistake they did in moving the England game out of there during the world cup. You see the FANS don't forget and it is a pity because FANS at Eden Gardens have been the most arduous supporters of the game year after year so much so that traveling teams dream to play at Eden Gardens but are at the same time intimidated by the home support!

Posted by RajitD on (December 15, 2011, 4:27 GMT)

Pertinent points by a great statesman for the game. In my view, in India, most major venues like Wankhede or Chinnaswamy Stadium or Chepauk host 15 IPL games (avg ticket price - 1500 to 2500 INR) for B grade stands. On top of that, there are 2-3 ODIs (INR 3000 each) and 2-3 tests (INR 1000 each). If somebody has to watch every game from match, one needs to shell out INR 50,000. And quite a few venues like Nagpur or Motera are quite far off from the normal city centre with poor public transport facilities. Three areas that need immediate attention are: Controlling supply at individual grounds (a venue shouldnt have more than 10 days of colored clothing cricket(IPL+ODI+T20). Secondly, provide make it convenient and comfortable for fans at the ground so that they have incentive to come back. Thirdly, price the tickets correct. Make it affordable for fans to come back.

Posted by nzcricket174 on (December 15, 2011, 4:22 GMT)

Here are some problems. Tickets are too expensive, cricket gets played during school and work, venues are not comfortable, can't bring food and drink into the ground so you have to pay super $$$$ to feed yourselves during the day. Just some of the problems with cricket and sport worldwide.

Posted by satish619chandar on (December 15, 2011, 4:13 GMT)

As we saw in India, the small venues do attract big crowd because, they want to see the players perform.. No crowd in larger venues because the local ppl go to stadium spending even more money for IPL and how can one expect normal people to come to ground always spending their money and time.. Plus, we got very good coverage in TV as well as in websites.. May be, boards can donate a part of media fee amount to grounds and get some stands for free and less the price of tickets so that a common man can afford it.. Just because fans dont come to ground doesn't mean cricket lost its fans.. Cricket fans now got more ways of following the game even in mobile with very good coverage.. ICC should respect it and boards need to make some adjustment if they need to show attendance in stadium..

Posted by   on (December 15, 2011, 4:08 GMT)

Very sensible coments by great wall :)

Posted by   on (December 15, 2011, 4:04 GMT)

Some of Dravid's observations are true to the letter. Administrators have to act and act fast, especially, to stop the dwindling attendance at cricket matches.

As Dravid rightly pointed out, "empty stands do not make for good television." Translated: No good ratings, no ad revenue.

Perhaps, the recent cheating scandals that had damaged the reputation of the game may be one of major reasons that is keeping the fans away from the matches. It is therefore paramount to keep cricket clean and free from the clutches of the bookies.

Law enforcement should be at the strickest. The dragnet should be cast beyond the players and should also target corrupt officials of the game. There are crooks everywhere and all, however big and mighty they may be, should be brought to book.

Posted by adisiva on (December 15, 2011, 4:02 GMT)

Not sure I agree entirely with RD whom I respect a lot. Crowds don't go to the stadium because they can watch it at home and can take breaks etc. when they need to. Modern day demands have caught up with cricket spectators even in India. One drastic way to approach will be what they do with NFL games in US - if the tickets are not sold out I think by end of Thur, the game will not be televised in that home market (50 mile radius). Of course now a days it needs to be blocked in internet but that can be done too. For cricket, I guess they should have certain percentage (say 50%) of stadium needs to be filled on any day before they broadcast the show. RD, have a great series and lookign forward to follow it closely.

Posted by   on (December 15, 2011, 4:01 GMT)

Dravid The Wall

Posted by   on (December 15, 2011, 3:25 GMT)

I hope Dhoni is listening....

Posted by   on (December 15, 2011, 3:15 GMT)

Fans are takers of the game. If they are not respected,then the declining popularity of test cricket and ODI to some extent will continue.So cricket authorities will do well to sit together and be sensible about deciding FTP's.

Posted by   on (December 15, 2011, 3:04 GMT)

If it was the great Don passing on the "cricketing' torch, it would be those wonderful statesman souls such as Pataudi and others passing their torch to Rahul! Bravo! Torch bearer of great values in the 21st Century and you give us all the more reason to long for and come over to watch Test Cricket! (I write this as I follow the tour game against the Chairman's XI that you are captaining with great interest!)

Posted by dan_loves_cricket on (December 15, 2011, 2:57 GMT)

Hats off to a true gentleman and a class wishes from a true Sri lankan cricket fan.

Posted by Prasant_NSW on (December 15, 2011, 2:41 GMT)

History may forget Don but not Dravid. Talented product from India!!!

- Prasant UNSW

Posted by Meety on (December 15, 2011, 2:36 GMT)

BTW - Dravid is one of my 3 most admired non-Ozzy cricketers. 1. Kumar, 2. Vettori, 3. Dravid - Swanny gets an honourable mention (misses out because he wants to scrap ODIs!).

Posted by Meety on (December 15, 2011, 2:34 GMT)

IMO - cricket is not in a bad place all things considered. I think the Day/Night concept of test matches will work conditionaly in some places - (take out the bad light equation). I think in some places starting earlier would help. Personally I love ODI cricket (not as much as Tests), I would scap bilateral series completely. A triangular series between 2 test teams & a "minnow/associate" could be played instead of a 7 game bilateral, where the 7th game is a final between the 2 best teams. This would grow the game by giving minnows more exposure. For Example India could host a triangular series with Pakistan & Ireland/Afghanistan. In the short term the minnows would get thrashed - but so did SL & they won a W/Cup a few years later. Tests need a tiered system which is not exclusive. The system (IMO), would mean more matches between roughly even teams. It would allow for Zimbabwe to play a one off test in England but 3 tests against Bangladesh.

Posted by Sulli001 on (December 15, 2011, 2:09 GMT)

If any Indian cricketer was deserving of a Knighthood it Dravid a true sportsman and a gentleman. I hope to see the 'The Wall' make a triple century against the Australians this summer.

Posted by   on (December 15, 2011, 2:07 GMT)

itss upto players like gayle,sehwag and pietersen to bring back the crowd to test and even odis

Posted by   on (December 15, 2011, 2:00 GMT)

Dravid seems like a very thoughtful and intelligent guy, who should definitely be involved in the running of the game once he retires. The fact he is from the most powerful cricketing country in the world is also a great plus. He understands the issues cricket faces, how more matches need to have a context for both ODI and test cricket, and that 20-20 does have its place but not at the expsnse of international cricket. I fear games administrators will try and milk 20-20 until its dry and people stop turning up in droves. It is still a novelty, be interesting how it all stacks up in about a decade or so. I want to see 5 match series between all of the top 4 (Aus, India, SA and England), and a ODI structure where everyone plays the same amount of matches over a period of a few years, and rankings are used for who qualifies and seedings for a world cup (only 8 qualify). Test world championship will be fantastic. We should also balance up how many tests everyone plays.

Posted by johnathonjosephs on (December 15, 2011, 1:30 GMT)

Think Dravid should have talked about how flat pitches should be used for T20s while saving the more gamely pitches (not flat, but not green, but a good contest between bat and ball) for the ODI's and Tests. He should of then added on that only that will make cricket more interesting. Why talk about how fans are important? Kind of obvious is it not? And 7 ODI match series? Come on, nobody does that anymore except for in the Ashes and thats only because of tradition

Posted by redneck on (December 15, 2011, 0:57 GMT)

once he retires get him into the icc, atleast then we can say that one person knows what needs to be done in the icc! i think he has a point respecting the fan. maybe not so much in australia but in other parts of the world boards dont seem to take spectator comfort into account at all. they provide cement steps for people to sit and think their job is done.

Posted by only_sehwag on (December 15, 2011, 0:40 GMT)

only sehwag can bring back crowds to to test matches..

Posted by   on (December 15, 2011, 0:36 GMT)

Thank you MrNampally, I agree with your views. but why don't you insist on thecBan of T20 which attract strong Players wrongly after money & as an aftereffect it affects the normal cricket badly. Injury & fitness problem increase many fold. An example to depict the human beings are ready to undertake any injury,illness or inconvenience not only to them but to the country as well in regard to loss of p prestige!all other statistics you have furnished are right.Above all common man who can not afford to spend lavishly has no interest in this ve rsion of the game. And in India more than 50% people are poor & not extraordinarily rich.this 60 % have to find ways for both ends meet &amidst that no time for Luxurious Games! Thanks again SreedharanMundanat

Posted by linkfloyd on (December 15, 2011, 0:08 GMT)

Well said RD. I think addressing the fan would be the way froward. Mindless cricket be it tests, odi or T20 will not be appreciated if its an overdose. With the amount of cricket played it is foolish to expect fans to fill in stadiums everytime. The effort it takes for a fan to reach a stadium is something to consider. Once in the stadium apart from cricket the facilities available makes one want to stay at home and follow the highlights. I agree that this phase is a rebuilding time for many countries but then having meaningless matches is doing more harm than promoting the sport. SRT is to reach a milestone and he will at his own, I think the hype surrounding that has killed the interest in the game. We need a clean hard fought series and I wish Team India and RD good luck .

Posted by bobagorof on (December 15, 2011, 0:04 GMT)

Dravid raises some valid points about keeping the fans interested. It is the fans and supporters who provide the revenue that pays everyone's salaries in this - if no-one watches, then sponsors will pull out and TV rights are worthless. Cricket administrators need to keep the fans in mind in all decisions - scheduling (7 match series, of any format, is too long), location, stadia facilities, and on-field decisions. The recent Australia/New Zealand series was blighted by players leaving the field for 'bad light' when the batsmen were happy to continue playing - I'd be pretty disappointed if I'd paid for a ticket to the ground and the players went off despite being willing to play. Over rates are also not enforced strongly enough - start banning captains and watch the rates improve. Also keep in mind that there are fans of each format, so while short forms are popular in some areas there is still a market for longer forms too!

Posted by Nutcutlet on (December 14, 2011, 23:51 GMT)

Dravid's speech is worth listening to in its entirety. He is a man whose integrity shines through his thought-processes that give rise to his views - on D/N test cricket, for example - and they are well worth considering and, I think, attempting. Besides being a great player of our great game, he is acutely aware of the reponsibility of today's cricketers as custodians of its traditional values; like all great cricket minds, he is very aware of its history and especially of its contribution to India's growth to nationhood. He embraces the primacy of test cricket - 'the gold standard' - he calls it; although he is aware of the need of other forms of the game, but sees them, if I read carefully between the lines, as a financial necessity which can allow test cricket to thrive, even in the increasingly frenetic modern world. As he says: ' Not everything of value comes with a price.' How true - and how hugely important it is that his message is taken to heart in powerful places.

Posted by cric_freak88 on (December 14, 2011, 23:33 GMT)

Dravid , what a player . a great personality

Posted by disco_bob on (December 14, 2011, 23:01 GMT)

Ticket prices we're fine at the recent NZ/AUS match at the Gabba, but the event was marred by beach balls flying everywhere, and no one intervened. Therefore all those around me were all craning their necks to join in this splendid fun. Every bash on the ball creates a loud thud. Then there is the insufferable booming 'music' played during a break, which in the surrounding acoustics is just a loud booming noise. In short being in the crowd at a Test match is not conducive for enjoying a day at the cricket.

Posted by FlashAsh on (December 14, 2011, 22:42 GMT)

I agree completely with Dravid! But what some of the "Fans" are missing is that the central bodies govern the TV/Media rights and hand these out to the grounds/stadia as and when the see fit and each ground/stadia competes for Test/ODI's etc so the stadia have to charge high prices to recover the fees they have outlayed to "Host" the Test/ODI's etc (Or at least thats how it is in UK!). Therefore Stadia will always charge whatever is needed to recoup those losses from the public who want to watch it live!

So the argument to fill stadia (at least in the UK!) will be to stop this ridiculous "Trendering" for International matches so that stadia all compete or get rotational matches and so spectators can enjoy reduced or "Normal" ticket prices!

Why should fans have to pay extra b'cos match is held in Cardiff rather than The Oval? And along with travel costs it simply doesn't make sense??

Posted by ashwals on (December 14, 2011, 22:40 GMT)

Has anyone gone to see a NBA, NBL, NFL or NHL game? Look at the facilities, the TV screens and the atmosphere. How are they able to bring in the crowds they do? With big Hi-Def TV's fans feel they get a better bang for their buck at home than actually going to the stadium. Better facilities will lead to better audiences. As simple as that.

Posted by   on (December 14, 2011, 22:14 GMT)

Greatest test Cricketer, in my humble Opinion. Salute and Respect from Bangladesh and USA.

Posted by   on (December 14, 2011, 21:58 GMT)

what a great sportsman he is and it is really a great honor for him to be the first player out of Australia to address the prestige plateform. Also he proved to be a great man to handle the audians. His speech is full of attention. what ever he said it worth while and should be considered by the ICC management

Posted by HALFBACKSOFWC on (December 14, 2011, 21:51 GMT)

First of all, congratulations to the legendary Rahu Dravid for being the first foreigner to speak on Bradman's day. As many of you suggest, it is purely due to overdose of cricket and excessive ticket rates. I have been going to Chepauk, Chennai since 1997. The price of ticket has exponentially increased. I feel ICC should take initiative on this issue. It can impose restrictions on the number of ODI matches a team can play in a year. Unfortunately, currently, only test matches and events like (WC or CT) are under ICC's control.

Posted by   on (December 14, 2011, 21:26 GMT)

A thinking Cricketer, a gentleman to the core...Rahul Dravid, you are the "gold standard" that you talk about...Indian Cricket administration will do well to hand over the reigns to Rahul once he decides to retire from his playing career...

Posted by   on (December 14, 2011, 21:13 GMT)

Bradman did a good thing by encouraging Sachin . As a result all the fans followed Sachin and the real Bradman (Mr.Wall) got an opportunity to prove himself and got an opportunity through "Bradman Oration", to send a strong message to the world. Some play for world records !! But this (video/audio) record of this famous speech will stay in our minds for ever!!

Posted by Shriman on (December 14, 2011, 21:08 GMT)

Empty stands definitely don't make for good TV. But, going to a match at a stadium in India is such an ordeal that the average man on the street has started to stay away from it. Unless, one is willing to cough up atleast Rs.10,000 it is impossible to be guaranteed a comfortable experience at the stadium on match-day. The lower-priced ticket-holders are treated like cattle & herded around with scant respect. How can one imagine taking one's family to such an experience? The key is to keep the ticket prices low and provide adequate amenities at the venue. If that is done, one could even go as far as a TV blackout over the city hosting the match until & unless at least 80% of the tickets are sold thus encouraging fans to go watch the game live.

Then again it is not as if the BCCI doesn't know all this. It is just that they don't care. And the results are there for all to see.

Posted by   on (December 14, 2011, 20:40 GMT)

People who want 50-overs cricket banned are all english fans coz their team can't play aggressive cricket, let alone lasting 50 overs. :-) that's a real weakness that england camp should sort first.

Posted by Pritish511 on (December 14, 2011, 20:37 GMT)

Dravid is truly an excellent sports person..He is of the likes of Kumble..

Posted by OhhhMattyMatty on (December 14, 2011, 20:36 GMT)

ODI cricket is boring. Test and T20 is the true test of cricketing skill. Whoever is number 1 in these formats is the best!

Posted by   on (December 14, 2011, 20:13 GMT)

Well articulated by the game's thinker unlike Tendulkar who is just interested in personal glory.

Posted by Parsuram on (December 14, 2011, 20:02 GMT)

I totally agree with Rahul Dravid that test cricket is the best format. This is the format that provides the true test of stamina and skills for batsmen and bowlers. When a quality batsman like Tendulkar faces up to Dale Steyn this is cricket at its best. Cricket is much more than slamming boundaries. It is more about quality aand skills, survival and performance.

Posted by   on (December 14, 2011, 19:24 GMT)

he is the intelligent cream among the worlds most experienced. he should be listened. ICC, u hear. and whats more pleasuring is "The first foreign player to deliver the Bradman Oration, which has been held since 2000" is none other than TIME's person of the year, The Protester-The wall. Kudos!!!

Posted by soumyas on (December 14, 2011, 19:23 GMT)

@the_wallster,@Shan156... It is in the way you present ur ideas...Swann's ODI scrapping idea really hurts cricket fans who have watched ODI's over the years with passion... and also directly scrapping ODI's isn't practical too ...whereas Dravid's reducing meaningless 7 -ODI series and giving more importance to TESTS and major tournaments like ODI WORLD CUPS looks really practical, and it doesn't hurt Indian fans so warmly welcomed by them... if you wanna do reforms, Any abrupt change in system is always opposed by the public (Eg:swann), where as smooth transition is slowly welcomed (Eg:dravid), it gives ppl enough time to adjust to it.

Posted by the_wallster on (December 14, 2011, 19:21 GMT)

@Shan156 there is becoming an increasing school of though that in general the 50-over game shoulod be scrapped. While commenting on the Ashes in 2009 Warney said the 50-over game should be scrapped, and he won two World Cups! the reasoning being, that 50-over game was introduced as a faster alternative to Test cricket, and now he have a more efficient, faster, entertaining and profitable format in t20, so why have 50-overs? the problem with cricket is the number of games, bringing about more injuries, therefore, decreasing the quality of bowlers, and hence a lack of quality in test matches. get rid of the 50-over game and you can increase the far more profitable t20 by double, have 5-match t20 series, thus preserving the quality of fast bowlers, and have 4-5 match test series'. simples.

Posted by Nampally on (December 14, 2011, 19:09 GMT)

Day/Night Test matches is not a solution for the lower crowds. The basic reasons are 1. Cricket Fatigue - too much cricket 2. Over priced Tickets 3. Poor facilities & over priced snacks 4. Security concerns. In smaller venues India drew packed stadiums because they are hungry to watch cricket.With IPL lasting for nearly 3 months at all big venues, what appetite is there for the people to spend money or time. Three formats are being over played with no balance. 5 Test matches + 7 ODI's + 3 T-20's like England did in Australia recently is just crazy. Indians did similar thing playing SL - home & away,NZ, WI, England, WI & finally Australia. Some cures 1.Just have 5 Test series with no ODI's in a specific tour. Have no more than 2 Test series in 12 month period ( 1 home & 1 away) 2. 5 ODI's + 3 T-20's should be together in one tour - no more than 2 such sets of matches( 1 home & i away). This avoids cricket Fatigue & keeps the players sharp & fit. Of course Fans like best players in.

Posted by knvkk on (December 14, 2011, 18:42 GMT)

firstly ticket rates in India need to be reduced......i come from chennai and comfortable tickets are so costly.....i am an avid cricket fan and love test cricket and would love to go the stands if the good tickets cost lessser!!!

Posted by   on (December 14, 2011, 18:36 GMT)

Hello Friends, my first postings on RahulbDravid's Article,appeared on 14thDec2011 at16-34 PM followed by postings at 16-55 PM& 17-04 PM. GMT . Please read in order of postingscas it could not be posted at one attempt for want of number of words which remain as restricted to 1000 characters instead of unlimited characters. Let us hope Cricinfobsoon introduces unlimited use of Characters with a view to promoting more liberal &Healthy discussions.The introduction of more GB of Space in G Mail, Yahho & other mail providers relevant in this context. As cric info is not much below in regard capability,let us hope this system of unlimited characters would soon be introduced by them Thanks & All the Best to Sreedharan Mundanat

Posted by suprabadh on (December 14, 2011, 18:17 GMT)

Let us give a serious thinking to what Dravid has said azbout Test cricket being played as day-night matches. People who want to enjoy test cricket will defintely do the needful.

Posted by NaniIndCri on (December 14, 2011, 18:05 GMT)

I think the lack of crowds for Ind vs Eng is because matches were held in main cities where IPL, World cup have been conducted and people must have put all their money into them. Crowds were there for Ind vs WI for smaller venues as they don't see matches very often and whatever opportunity they get they will take it. As per test matches are concerned i don't think people have the time watch 5 full day cricket as they will be working. And unlike western countries, working hours in India are taken seriously.

Posted by SajithKrishna on (December 14, 2011, 17:50 GMT)

This is the link of the whole speech!

Posted by Shan156 on (December 14, 2011, 17:26 GMT)

@the_wallster, exactly. I was just going to post the same thing but then wanted to check if someone else did and there you go. Maybe Swann went a little overboard by calling to scrap the format but cutting down meaningless ODIs is definitely necessary. Indian fans came down heavily on Swann and even posted absurd messages that he was scared and what not when all he was saying is what even legends like Dravid feel. Now, Dravid is retired from ODIs but he is talking from the perspective of a former player who has felt the burden of playing too many of these meaningless games. To their credit, some Indian fans did support Swann to some extent in that a 7 match ODI series is a total waste of time.

Posted by Jack_India on (December 14, 2011, 17:08 GMT)

Agree with 'dsig3'. We need good pitches where there is competition between bat and ball. Curators who create flat batting pitches must be fired. Then every run that a batsman scores will be cheered.

Posted by Rahulbose on (December 14, 2011, 17:06 GMT)

What they need is simple test series should be 3 tests, any shorter or longer ones don't make sense. Bilateral ODI series should not be a must have on a tour, its better to add a test match instead along with a T20 series.

In India they should spread the matches so that any city doesn't host more than 2-3 international games in 6 months.

Day and Night test match should be tried out, but I would reserve judgement until we see one in action. My biggest fear is it will be a big disadvantage for spinners.

Posted by   on (December 14, 2011, 17:04 GMT)

Ttys reduction in rate should be by 60% less. No needvto scrap any version as people are acquainted with it & interested in it now. It is really sad to note empty Stadiums in Bombay & Kolkatta where earlier there were no tickets to getveven by paying extra money. The main reason for this is IPL like tournaments. However,theWorld Cup in all versions should continue once in 3 years.Tests also under light is a better way to get more people to watch Rahul Dravid deserve A lot of Praise for getting opportunity to Speak in Bradman function in the memory of the Legend Sreedharan Mundanat

Posted by   on (December 14, 2011, 16:55 GMT)

(CONTD) From earlier Posting.....introduced as late as 10-30 night latest.With reduction in all the versions the number of Matches played in different countries a very healthy economy & competition could be achieved.Public get more leisure time towards evening. day time everybody has to look after their Job/ Work to earn money. To avoid Luxury & Economy of the country by way of inflation & diminishing value of money As a matter of fact is due to extravagant cricket like IPL(this kind was originally introduced in Australia ) is harmful.Players are getting more interested in Money & this results also in National Spirit.this kn Ind of Luxurious fixture should be banned & normal competitive matches of all the versions should be introduced.There does not appear to be any need to scrap any version.People are acquainted with them all & are interested too. So let it continue in a rationed manner. Govt should introduce stern measures to do this(CONTD)..........Sreedharan Mundanat...........

Posted by Tumo on (December 14, 2011, 16:54 GMT)

dsig3 - I'm sorry, how were those pitches not entertaining? Jesus, they were incredible! A bit for everyone, I would happily watch cricket like that for years to come!

Posted by 2.14istherunrate on (December 14, 2011, 16:52 GMT)

He's got it just about right.

Posted by   on (December 14, 2011, 16:36 GMT)

Rahul Dravid has put forward some very valid points worth considering seriously by ICC & all other country wise cricket Authorities together by organizing a debate on the need for 3 different versions of Cricket simultaneously apart from regional cricket matches likecRanji in India ,countyvcricket,,Australian,South African,West indies,NewZealandland, ,Pakistan,Zimbabve ,Srilankan cricket of domestic nature. Where is the time for people of all these countries to watch cricket of 3 different versions invoving spending from their Pocket too.Any thing in excess. Is bad.the main emphasis is to reduce series number &?Matches number.All versions on a Day Night basis might attract people more all over the cricket playing countries.Secondly the Ticket rate should also be reduced to attract Public. At the prevailing rates all over the world therevis nothing to be surprised to see empty Stadiums people,Preferring TVTo Night in all versions should be introduced (CONTINUED)....MSree..

Posted by khiladisher on (December 14, 2011, 16:17 GMT)


Posted by timus6778 on (December 14, 2011, 16:05 GMT)

can anyone give the link to dravid's speech's video....???? i want it badly....BADLY

Posted by Robster1 on (December 14, 2011, 16:01 GMT)

Darvid is quite right that there are way too many pointless ODIs. Two tests tours are no good either. Sporting wickets are amust as well. Scale ODIs right back now please the ICC. Can't we just have an annual test championship....

Posted by deepakgupta19 on (December 14, 2011, 16:01 GMT)

I agree with Dravid only partially. Although I agree that there is a lot of ODI cricket been played, but having day-night Tests are ridiculous. Infact there should be a ban on day-night ODIs and T20 as well. Why do you want to waste so much of electricity when the world is struggling to become a greener planet.

Posted by krisham51 on (December 14, 2011, 15:43 GMT)

day night could be one option.there is one more option but it changes the basic structure of 100 overs /day for one team.the next day the other team plays 100 overs and similarly for the second innings. this will ensure a result in each and every test.what happens if a team gets all out in less than 100 overs. still the other team gets to play 100 in the first innings.The second should give a result.Thsi becomes a 4 day match and other rules are the same.What is the opinion of the members?

Posted by ThatzMyView on (December 14, 2011, 15:19 GMT)

It amazing to note that even his speech is technically correct, lengthy and on the spot just like his test batting.

Posted by Dr.Vindaloo on (December 14, 2011, 14:58 GMT)

I'd say day-night tests should be a last resort. Alter the fundamentals of test cricket at your peril. Much better to explore other means of promoting the game, and scheduling is definitely the key here to give test cricket breathing space. Schedule fewer, longer tours (except for Zim and B'desh). Schedule less ODIs. Schedule tests for the convenience of paying spectators rather than TV viewers. I guarantee that this would increase attendances by at least 25% with no need for gimmicks like pink ball.

Posted by inswing on (December 14, 2011, 14:56 GMT)

Dravid is right on the money, as usual. Very inexpensive Test tickets, day-night Tests, reduction in the number of ODI, elimination of 2-Test series, these are all no brainers.

Posted by Alexk400 on (December 14, 2011, 14:24 GMT)

50% cheaper tickets for kids below 18. Kids needs to get inspired for future cricketers. 75% cheaper for kids below 10. 25% cheaper for below 21. That should be the standard.

Posted by pragmatist on (December 14, 2011, 13:41 GMT)

One solution for decluttering the international calendar is removing international T20s completely. Currently they are tagged on to the start and the end of a series, are relatively small in number and are insignificant in meaning. However they do take up around a week of a tour (given moving around the country, preparation for new format etc). Would fans rather see a three-match Test series and no T20s or a two-match Test series and one or two T20s? Keep T20 for domestic and franchise cricket.

Posted by dsig3 on (December 14, 2011, 13:32 GMT)

Rubbish, anyone who has watched Aus play the last 2 series would agree that the main factor is the pitch. Why dont you worry about producing good entertaining wickets before worrying about pink balls.

Posted by Jagdishbhuvaneshwari on (December 14, 2011, 13:24 GMT)

Thats Rahul for u, first foreigner to deliver "Bradman Oration" in Australia. U ask him do anything, he does it in the same way as he bats. Purely technical. Speaks about Bradman, how Indian cricket evolves from small states, future of cricket. Its Awesome..

Posted by Jagdishbhuvaneshwari on (December 14, 2011, 13:24 GMT)

Thats Rahul for u, first foreigner to deliver "Bradman Oration" in Australia. U ask him do anything, he does it in the same way as he bats. Purely technical. Speaks about Bradman, how Indian cricket evolves from small states, future of cricket. Its Awesome..

Posted by Balldinho on (December 14, 2011, 13:21 GMT)

Please explain to me how Test Cricket will help spread the game Mr. Dravid? If the 10 nations refuse to open up the 'So called' ultimate form of the game to everyone else how can this sport ever gain relevance to the rest of the world? The cricketing nations are already being turned away to other Sports as it is, T-20 and 50 over is the only accessible forms for others to actually PLAY! But yes the rest of the world doesn't matter does it, as long as the elitist country club of 'Test Nations' keep the game the way THEY want it, all is good!

Posted by Balldinho on (December 14, 2011, 13:21 GMT)

Please explain to me how Test Cricket will help spread the game Mr. Dravid? If the 10 nations refuse to open up the 'So called' ultimate form of the game to everyone else how can this sport ever gain relevance to the rest of the world? The cricketing nations are already being turned away to other Sports as it is, T-20 and 50 over is the only accessible forms for others to actually PLAY! But yes the rest of the world doesn't matter does it, as long as the elitist country club of 'Test Nations' keep the game the way THEY want it, all is good!

Posted by IPL_is_Fixed on (December 14, 2011, 13:14 GMT)

Jammy's thoughts are noblest and it is reflected in this page. There is a need for serious consideration to cut off ODIs and T20s. Bilateral ODIs and T20s are becoming meaningless. And that IPL is intolerable. Test match ticket pricing should be made flexible. Overall Test Cricket is sacred format of Cricket. This Team India is IPL servant and completely unfit and useless to play International Cricket or Test Cricket. IPL has taken betting to highest level. IPL is not a Cricketing event it is a worst commerical event. Team India and BCCI is completely focussed on IPL. Because of IPL, Team India is losing skill, inspiration, motivation and fitness to play Test Cricket. These curators, coaches and BCCI officials are working for IPL growth rather than Cricket growth. Until IPL is thrashed, Team India is not going to perform well in other tournaments. IPL is completely meaningless and obsolete Tournament. Test, ODI & T20 Cricket is great to watch between Countries unlike IPL Teams which lo

Posted by NBRADEE on (December 14, 2011, 12:49 GMT)

Why argue with a player of Dravid's calibre? He has put this argument squarely in the lap of the ICC, which can follow the path chosen by FIFA (games all day, night and whenever) or chart its own course, with player preservation being at the foundation of scheduling. Tests and T20s are the best options for generating money re: Internet hits, television, and should be chosen on that basis.

However, he needs to question if current nine-year olds are interested in seeing 'country vs. country' (please, they are really franchises with country tags!) on a continuous basis; I feel deep research may prove otherwise.

Posted by symsun on (December 14, 2011, 12:44 GMT)

There shud not be any Bilateral ODI series any more. Play tri-series with just 2 rounds of league matches and 1 finals, if possible play 4 teams with 1 round league and 1 finals. That will keep the fans and the players interested in cricket. And keep the stadium tickets cheaper and instead get the money from advertisers and broadcasters, this will bring the crowd to the stadiums. With the economy already going down, u need to bring down the ticket rates. Listen u bull dogs!

Posted by King7srk on (December 14, 2011, 12:42 GMT)

Who will stop the BCCI from makimg money out of T20 games and the question is even if a legend like dravid and the whole cricket fraternity says to give importance to test cricket the ICC & BCCi will just give a deaf ear to it as they think only in monetory terms.

Posted by the_wallster on (December 14, 2011, 12:36 GMT)

so graeme swann calls the 50-over game a farce and the 7-match series with India next year as ridiculous, and he gets slaughtered by the Indians, yet when Lord Dravid says it he is heralded. double-standards as usual from the biased indians.

Posted by AnshulNagar on (December 14, 2011, 12:14 GMT)

@ Lillian Thomson - Ur comments/suggestions r stupid to say the least.

Posted by ste13 on (December 14, 2011, 12:10 GMT)

I also think that tests with all the twists and turns offer the highest level of sporting challenges - more unpredictability than T20. In longer term everybody would get bored of high scoring games on Bangalore pitch, with boundaries coming too easy. Also agree that day-night games should be tested asap. As said below starting games on Monday is ridiculous. Nevertheless, basing on what you can see in forums, tests are widely followed, also in India. It is a pity than this potential cannot be understood by administrators.

Posted by satish619chandar on (December 14, 2011, 12:09 GMT)

I personally dont feel Day-Night is the way for test cricket.. We already have ODI and T20 played in DN format.. Tests have their own fans and they love the matches irrespective of the it being a day match.. Wont the media contracts be impacted by this? Day time looks perfect for the tests as of now.. Wish they don't change it..

Posted by Gizza on (December 14, 2011, 12:06 GMT)

Agree with nzcricket174. Cheaper tickets are the way to go. Also always have 2 days of the Test on the weekend. If a hard-working individual doesn't have any annual leave, a day-off from work is also a cost to them (in some businesses/economies might cost them their job). Better services at the Test match. Day-night Tests are interesting but still not absolutely necessary. With regards to ODI's, I personally enjoy and vividly remember tri-nation and 4 nation series. Bilateral definitely becomes repetitive but the World Series/Benson and Hedges/Commonwealth/VB series in Australia are always memorable. I've found them easier to remember than many Test series. Also there were the 3/4 nations tournaments in Sharjah, Natwest in England and even a few tri-series in India, etc. I think the Aussie tri-series does very well by having a best of three finals. No dead rubber finals. Dead rubbers are terrible in ODI's. The worst thing about the 50-over format.

Posted by AARON.IFTEKHAR on (December 14, 2011, 12:01 GMT)

"Cricket must find a middle path," as Dravid said, between 5-days long Test Cricket, 50-overs OD Cricket and T20 Cricket. But, what is the solution? Why we need 3 formats of International Cricket? 450-overs Test Cricket is too long, but pinnacle form of the cricket that the players most wanted to play, and unfortunately most of the cricket fans did not want to watch, as they think it is waste of time. I think, the golden solution is make strictly only on one format, which will be acceptable for all - players and fans: use 50 or 40-overs OD Cricket format as 4 innings Test Cricket in 2 days (or days-nights). 2 innings per team could distributed alternatively - team who chose bat first on day 1, should go to field on day2.

Posted by Subhojit62 on (December 14, 2011, 11:39 GMT)

Another aspect cannot be ignored - You cannot start a test match on Monday or in other words without the weekend in it. Ridiculous. Like England, test matches should start on Thursday so that the thrid and forth days fall on weekends which are usually the most interesting part of the game. If a game hangs on a balance at the end of day four, people will come to watch it even it is a Monday. We have witness that already.

Posted by ANJAN28 on (December 14, 2011, 11:24 GMT)

Mr. Dependable has again played an exquisite cover drive through the two money hungry fielders -THE BCCI AND THE ICC. In a simple and humble manner he has highlighted how the BCCI is responsible for the decreased interest among the cricket lovers by playing meaningless ODI matches with minnows like Bangladesh, Kenya, Zimbabwe, just to fill their coffers. So it is upto the BCCI to rectify themselves or to get ready for the worst.

Posted by shashank_kumar_nair on (December 14, 2011, 11:22 GMT)

well said, have also blogged on similar though more radical lines @

Posted by Gannuboy on (December 14, 2011, 11:22 GMT)

The most meaningless matches in these tours are the T20s. Just one match does not help anyway in making it interesting. Once a team loses a match there is no room for improvement and coming back in the next match. I think T20s should be left out just to be played as national leagues and international cricket should focus on test championships, test series and worldcup. Any series should have a minimum of 3 test matches and 5 ODIs. And no two teams should tour the other country in the same year. Or else we would end up watching IND vs SL all year.

Posted by Beertjie on (December 14, 2011, 11:12 GMT)

Excellent points being made at a conspicuous event. Viva the pink ball. Starting as late as is practical is the way to get people in. That and standardizing bat dimensions. If this were tennis, there is nothing to stop the ICC forcing players to go back to wooden racquets.

Posted by SibaMohanty on (December 14, 2011, 11:00 GMT)

Lillian Thomson, read the whole speech and you will know how rich is it in its history, geography and context. Humour included. Salute, RD.

Posted by dacqueries on (December 14, 2011, 10:54 GMT)

Coming from a a player and person of this calibre one can only hope that the ICC is listening. Along with day/night matches I'd love to see more consistency in the preparation of grounds and pitches, perhaps as a result of paid ICC groundsmen travelling the world as consultant. There's nothing worse that a five day draw on a dead wicket.

Posted by pratap_wagle on (December 14, 2011, 10:51 GMT)

Very thoughtful Dravid as always. The fact is that there isn't much thrill in ODI or T20 (unless it is semis or finals of world championship) because even if the team loses a match, it is not remembered for long time. But on the other hand winning/losing a test match is remembered for long time and we feel like watching the highlights of those legendary matches again and again(Kolkatta test, Adelaide etc.. ) I still get dejected when I think about Sydney test where India lost because of pathetic umpiring. Moreover Watching Test match is more thrilling because we get to see Red ball flying on top of batsmen head, off the edges, Red ball nipping from no where, low bounce, unexpected bounce, spin because of foot marks, reverse swing, batsmen trying hard on 4th day - 5th day pitches with fielders sledging around, Batsmen defending a high quality delivery. I would wake up early in the morning or stay whole night watching a high quality test match rather than wasting whole day watching ODI

Posted by nzcricket174 on (December 14, 2011, 10:48 GMT)

Cheapen the tickets, that's the solution.

Posted by srikanths on (December 14, 2011, 10:39 GMT)

Dravid has spoken as soliday and crisply as he bats. Whathe says about lack of crowds to watch Test Cricket is really worrying.Atleast ODI s used to get full ground filled. That was also missing in the last two series.

I had gone to watch Ind-Aus in Bangalore. The facilities were pathetic. Big screen was there one side only, getting in to the ground was an ordeal, could not carry bags etc, no food etc and food inside the stadium is difficult to get and less said about the quality the better. Just the way the mulliplexes have made movie watching a pleasure, we have to do something about cricket watching.As he mentions, TV feeds on direct watching. Over a period with less crowds at stadiums, will reflect on TV watching also. Something drastci needs to be done from a marketing perspective .May be call Lalit Modi ??

Posted by bighit14 on (December 14, 2011, 10:24 GMT)

I think its too much cricket on the bigger venues and sky-rocketing ticket rates for poorly maintained seats. Mainly the IPL has got the spectators bored on the cricket ground. If only would the IPL calendar be reduced and played in smaller venues as well, we can start seeing fully occupied stadiums again i India

Posted by LillianThomson on (December 14, 2011, 10:17 GMT)

As orators go he is clearly no Sangakkara, but his points are important. 50 over ODIs are viewed with contempt by the players, and they should be banned except in World Cup years. And the ICC should mandate that countries can play three match series of T20 - or more- subject to a requirement that the same two teams play a minimum 3 Test series. We need to move to Four Day Day-Night Tests, with three 3 hour sessions running 12-3, 330-630 and 7-10 pm. And with home teams automatically penalised with defeat if more than two innings in a match score more than 400 runs. That would allow seaming, bouncy or spinning wickets but terminate the boring flat-track run-fests which have so badly wounded Test cricket. Preferably we'd bring back uncovered pitches too. Similarly, if ever a team scores 500 or more, the batsmens innings should be excluded from the averages as the wicket was unsporting, just like we'd strike out steroid-inflated athletics records.

Posted by SOROUT_SAHAB on (December 14, 2011, 10:11 GMT)

Mr. Rahul dravid you are true hero of indian cricket

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