Champions Trophy 2013 June 22, 2013

Odds shorten on Champions Trophy repeat


The 2013 Champions Trophy has been deemed such a success that it appears highly likely that the competition will be repeated.

The ICC had originally decided to replace the competition with a Test Championship and the 2013 tournament would be the last one. But after excellent crowds and interest from around the world, the ICC are reconsidering that decision and will discuss their options at their annual conference, from June 25-29 in London.

The ICC remain keen to promote Test cricket and feel a Test Championship would complement the World T20 and the World Cup and ensure there was a high-profile competition for each of the three formats of the game. While continuing the Champions Trophy would mean there were two global 50-over events, it is now thought there is sufficient difference between the Champions Trophy and the World Cup and sufficient interest from broadcasters for both to survive.

The Test Championship is pencilled into the Future Tours Programme (FTP) for a three-week window in June 2017 in the UK. But the concept in its present guise is compromised by the fact that it would involve just four teams - the top four teams in the Test rankings - and would feature only three games: two semi-finals and a final. As such, it would be of less relevance and interest to those nations not participating and may be less attractive to broadcasters. There is little scope in the FTP for a longer event or a change in venue.

The ICC privately acknowledges that, even if the event was held successfully in 2017, there is a concern over its sustainability. Among their issues is the possibility that one of the key nations in terms of broadcast revenues, most obviously India, might not always be ranked among the top four Test nations, while there is also a concern that, outside the UK, games between neutral countries may not be well supported. The ICC is keen to avoid a situation where its flagship Test event is played in near-empty stadiums.

While the final of the 2013 Champions Trophy is threatened by poor weather, 12 of the 15 games will have had sell-out crowds (defined as a minimum 95% of the ground capacity) with the multicultural population of the UK helping guarantee enthusiastic audiences at most games. Sensible ticket pricing has also played a part.

The Champions Trophy has, for much of its existence, been unloved. But the short, sharp format involving only the top eight sides playing for only 18 days in which nearly every game has a consequence has captured the imagination of the cricket-watching public. By contrast, the 2011 World Cup lasted six weeks and featured some tediously one-sided encounters.

There is a chance that the 2013 trophy may have to be shared as rain threatens to intervene in the final. Such is the frenetic international schedule it was deemed impossible to allocate reserve days. England and New Zealand, for example, play a T20 on Tuesday, just two days after the Champions Trophy final, while Australia being their Ashes preparations in earnest on Wednesday when they start a four-day match against Somerset.

Whatever its faults, the strengths of the Champions Trophy format have been apparent over the last couple of weeks and, as the details of a Test Championship are considered in more detail, the Trophy has arguably never appeared so attractive.

George Dobell is a senior correspondent at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • BIPUL KUMAR on June 24, 2013, 23:54 GMT

    ICC Champions Trophy should be continue but in different format . Top 5 team will play in a round robin league and a final that could be called Elite CT & Bottom 5 will play in another round robin league and a final that can be titled Plate CT. As far as test championship is concern , all test team should have to play same number of series in a four year circle . Each and every series will count to determine the winner.A result of 1-0, 2-1, 3-2will give same points ; 0-0, 1-1, 2-2 will give same points too.While a whitewash of 3-0,4-0, will give same points.Series should played home and away basis , The team will earn highest points after four year circle , will be declared winner ....

  • Shubham on June 24, 2013, 15:30 GMT

    I think ICC should use Champions Trophy as a knock-out cup between the Top-10 teams with 2 groups of 5 teams each, with the current format.

    Instead of reducing the no. of teams in the World Cup, ICC should make it compulsory for every team to play qualifiers let it be of 8 groups of 3 teams each with each team facing each other once or twice and the top teams from each group qualify along with the next top 4 teams of all teams. So even teams like USA will get chance to play against top teams.

    I think the idea of a Test Championship cannot work because of too much home advantage factor. Though having a Test series in which India-Pakistan make one team and England-Australia make another could be the next big thing. Just think how great it would be, two biggest rivalries fighting together. Or even India-Aus and Eng-Pak as this will make both teams equal in almost every aspect, they will become the two invisible teams of all time !!!

  • Al on June 24, 2013, 13:13 GMT

    A three-match Test Championship, with the first match being a semifinal. What a joke! Imagine how many people will watch if those four teams were NZ, WI, SL, and England.

  • Narasimha on June 24, 2013, 9:01 GMT

    @Darth_Whore :-), Finals in Alaska or Siberia or maybe even Antarctica, thats funny. Could be even Mars also. But this event organised by ICC was a complete sham with no proper planning and foresight at all. Complete mess. Ask some one to mess and ICC will be readily available. There is 365 days in a year, out which can't ICC reserve one more day for a final!!!!!!.

  • Rahul on June 24, 2013, 8:59 GMT

    I think champions trophy should be played between top 5 icc ranking teams in a round-robin format and 1 final.

  • Darth on June 24, 2013, 7:33 GMT

    World cup should be played like IPL. 12 teams, everyone plays with every other team, twice, home and away. Then the final four can play semi finals, and the last two finals at neutral venues like Alaska or Siberia or maybe even Antarctica. The winner will be a real world champion.

  • Dummy4 on June 24, 2013, 3:48 GMT

    To make World cup intresting i think there should be two groups of 5-5 teams and then a direct semi-final between top teams of the groups .ICT should continue with same format.Even if they include a Knock out stage for the lowest ranked 89 and 10th team it would make it more interesting.

  • N on June 23, 2013, 21:05 GMT

    @Mostakim Shuvo: I disagree. Champions trophy should be competed by all the teams that have a chance of winning it. In this tournament every team had a chance to win it. If BD had played, they may have caused an upset but that's about it. I am sure BD fans will disagree but that's the truth. So unless BD can compete with the top teams "consistently", I am afraid they won't be playing the champions trophy.

  • Dummy4 on June 23, 2013, 21:02 GMT

    I do like a major test tournament as well. Yeah this ICC Champions trophy was good but most of the games was hampered by rain. Other than this it was good game, England board must think of stadiums where they can close with ceiling when it is raining and do not allow the rain to effect the game.