Indian Premier League May 13, 2010

Number of IPL matches could be reviewed - Pataudi

Cricinfo staff

Mansur Ali Khan Pataudi has said the IPL governing council, of which he is a member, could consider reviewing the number of matches for the league next season. India's poor performance in the World Twenty20 this year has led to criticism suggesting their exit from the tournament was a consequence of a hectic IPL schedule. The IPL is set to stage 94 games in 2011, with the addition to two new teams, as opposed to 60 this year. Pataudi, while acknowledging that the increasing volume of cricket was proving stressful, said players would have to be mentally and physically tougher to adapt to the game's growing demands.

"We can look at this and say how do we reduce the matches. I think there is a need perhaps to review that," Pataudi told the news channel Times Now. "But it will be very difficult now to reduce the number of teams."

Pataudi said the decision to include two new teams and increase the number of games next season did meet opposition even within the governing council. "I can't exactly tell you what happened in the council meeting but it wasn't exactly a unanimous decision I assure you," he said. "A lot of people said there is too much cricket going on, but it was carried. It will be a long summer for cricket. Cricket is going to become more and more stressful as we continue, and people will have to be fitter and tougher mentally as well as physically."

MS Dhoni, India's captain, had said in the aftermath of his team's exit from the World Twenty20 that the travelling and the after-match parties during the IPL had contributed to tiredness among players. "I think Dhoni is not right about the IPL nights as much as he is right about the travelling. That's what really puts you under strain," Pataudi said. "Cricket is very strenuous nowadays.

"Players have to be absolutely single-minded about the game. They have to think about and focus on nothing but cricket and just forget everything else."

Meanwhile, Niranjan Shah, the IPL vice-chairman, has defended the league and lashed out against the Indian players for their "pathetic" performance. "Our cricketers have done very badly in the Twenty20 World Cup. It's really disappointing that they didn't win a single match in the Super Eight round. They must not try to offer excuses for their pathetic performance," Shah told reporters in Rajkot. "The players have to blame themselves. They must introspect where they went wrong or what went wrong. I think, except one or two players, most of them failed to do their jobs.

"I don't think players can complain now that they were tired because of IPL and hence they weren't in a position to give off their best in the West Indies. Most of them are quite educated and know their responsibilities well. If they felt the IPL after-parties weren't good for them, they shouldn't have gone there. Now when the Indian team has been bundled out of the tournament, I think it's ridiculous to blame the IPL and give petty excuses."

"Instead of blaming it, the IPL should be considered a good platform for practice for the players just before an important event like the T20 World Championship. But if the players feel that they're tired because of the IPL, they shouldn't play in it. There is no shortage of talented cricketers in India. There are so many of them to choose from. We shouldn't depend upon on only ten or 11 players."

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • sanjeev on May 17, 2010, 12:30 GMT

    There should be no more than 30 games in IPL, Period. Now there are 10 teams. Divide in two groups of 5. Each team plays the other once so 10+10 games in league stage. then semi and finals. So 24 games! Thats the way to go please please reduce the tamasha to 24 games only! Guys lets start a petition to BCCI where thousands of us should sign saying that we want to see around 30 matches in next years IPL!!! Any volunteers?

  • sanjeev on May 17, 2010, 12:23 GMT

    Here is one idea: Play 5-over a side games starting 8pm. The games can be played at a slow comfortable pace. Introduce the concept of 'walking between wickets'. There should be 'comfort zones' at boundary lines where a cheerleader should be available for the fielders to gossip. comfy couches should be placed at long-on, long-off, deep midwicket, deep cover, etc. Match should be so friendly that the losing team should also celebrate. See then we indians will forget the difference between winning and losing. As the night goes on one can bring the party mood to the ground. Players can dance with the cheerleaders in the middle of the ground and crowd can also enjoy. Crowd can also see how these IPL parties are. One can have singing dancing competitions... it wll be a full masala for indian audience and BCCI can fill their pockets with money. I am sure this can sell more than just cricket. What do you think guys?

  • Vishal on May 17, 2010, 9:27 GMT

    If you cricinfo staff read my e mails I used to send all the time, will find the points which gets appeared from the mouth of legends. I am not saying I am a champion in writing. But you underestimate my thaughts if you read those. You do not reply to any of my mail. But still I will keep sending. IPL teams should be devided in two groups as per their ratings and each team will play against all teams in the same group and only once for the league matches. But IPL is totally mess. In fact 20-20 format is totally mess. Better you sponser these kinds of games on foreign soils if you are honest about your thaughts that our games quality should be raised. IPL will not raise the quality of players but will be like a macchi market and you will get totally confused and unable to select a proper player for required track or pitch. IPL will only help to turn the money over. Nothing else. If you want to improve cricket IPL is never going to help you. I am DAM SURE. Take a note of this.

  • Chanchal on May 16, 2010, 0:30 GMT

    Goverment must not allow Cricket to be played beyond 9 PM to avoid stress & strain of the players.Also,security & transport is a problem for general public to travel in the night. Income Tax & other taxes should be fully charged and no concession should be allowed. Names of allthe franchises should be informed to parliament and State bodies of Cricket organisation to avoid illegality.

  • JM on May 14, 2010, 15:19 GMT

    The media as well as some past players are clearly over doing the critcism bit. Neither did they deserve so much credit in 2007 nor do they deserve this amount of criticism now. It shows us as stupid and immature people. So is the same with Pakistan but they do have a lot of infighting. Not so much of that with India. Just look at it - India were 90+ for 1 in the first 10 overs but only 70+ in the next 10. Does that mean that they played very responsibly in the first 10 overs and irresponsibly in the next 10. The Lankans bowled well at the end and we just could'nt get them away. No IPL or late nights are reasons. They lack consistency which is what really matters. No team can match the Aussies in consistency. They are the true champs! Ssome players may act a lill high headed or arrogant and they should be handled. But every player knows what is in store for them if they dont perform. They stand to lose heavily. So lets stop thiis bashing - its getting to be sickening

  • subram54 on May 14, 2010, 13:20 GMT

    Mansur Ali Khan Pataudi is the only former cricketer who has come out with a very positive suggestion for reducing the number of matches in the next editionof IPL. I thinkit should just be a single tier league which would mean 45 matches followed by semif finals and final. In all the tournament would be of 48 matches

  • Chaitanya on May 14, 2010, 7:36 GMT

    The Best way is two divide the 10 teams into two groups (not based on south or North), they should be divided based on a draw. Then the teams in the group shoud play against their other in Home & Away. Then the best 2 teams from each group will come to Semis & then to Final. The total No of matches for each team will be 8 in group level, then may be 1 in semis & 1 final. So this will reduce the stress on players & they will be fit enough for other tounaments.

  • shimoga on May 14, 2010, 7:05 GMT

    I Think IPL Mgmt and BCCI have their heads in the sand. There are too mny IPL games. They should be cut in to half. Make two divisions and have a knock out like the ICC T20. Give the players some time to rest and plan out the strategy to play other T20 teams in ICC championshisp. The money greed is hurting the country.

  • laxman on May 14, 2010, 5:30 GMT

    Nawab is right while saying the number of games should be reduced. As all teams should be treated at par and should the logic be that every team plays the other team dividing into groups may not work out. One INNOVATIVE way to reduce the number of matches can be, EVERY TEAM WILL PLAY NINE GAMES WITH THE OTHER NINE AND ANOTHER 5(NOT 9). This can be achieved by giving each team 4 BYES. So in all each team play 14 matches as it is in present format. This ensures no loss in revenues for the concerned entities. PLAYER BURN-OUT can also be reduced by making it mandatory for the franchisees that they play a particular player, including the skipper not more than in 10 games during the league stages. Retirees form the national teams can be exempted from this clause. TRAVEL TIME can be reduced by making every team a HOST for Three consecutive matches including a double header.

  • Dummy4 on May 14, 2010, 5:25 GMT

    Indian team didn't had enough time to prepare for T20 world cup. BCCI should learn from its mistake. You just can't do directly without any preparation for important tournament like world cup. You require atleast 15 days preparatory camp and two to three warm up games for the unit to gel together. I think BCCI administrators have messed up because of IPL.

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