Cricket is described as a game where twenty two fools are playing in a stadium, and are being watched by twenty two thousand fools around them. But in India, cricket is much more than just a ‘foolish’ game. It’s a religion here. Where else in the world would you find people praying and conducting ‘pujas’ and ‘mannats’ for the game? Where else would people quit their work to watch a game on the TV? That’s what cricket means to us Indians.
Here, every child dreams to become a cricketer. Every child at least once in his life has been a gully cricketer. Cricket is a part of our life. .
Now many formats of the game have come to existence, like the test cricket, the one day cricket, the twenty-twenty, and the leagues. The advent of different formats of the game has lead to increase in opportunities and hence the number of aspiring cricketers has also gone up.
The question that arises is- Is the performance of the player influenced by the format of the game he is playing? Let’s take the example of Indian Premier League and the ICC twenty-twenty series. In the IPL series, the owners of the eight teams bid for the players on the board and the highest bidder gets the player to play for his team. Thus each player has a hefty sum to play for his team. On the other hand, in the ICC organised twenty-twenty games, the players represent their parent countries, and are paid depending on their performance.
I feel that the players would obviously perform better in the commercialised format of the game, like the IPL. When money is at stake, each player is forced to do his best and bring victory to his team. In this format of the game every player plays for him, more than for his team and hence brings out the best capacity within him. This may or may not be true in the case of other series. Also, this format of the game in fact encourages players from different backgrounds and teams to come together and play as a single unit. It promotes the sense of brotherhood amongst the players. It decreases sledging on the field too.
Being the shorter and faster version of the game, it is more exciting to watch and thus will garner more response than cricket earlier had. Another positive point is that, it will boost the tourism industry of the country hosting the game too.
T-20 is becoming a search ground for new talent whereby the fresh talent can be found and tested against the giants of various teams instantly. Take for instant players like Tirumalsetti Suman of the Deccan chargers. He was truly an amazing find for the Indian Cricket team. Same is the case others like Pragyan Ojha, Harmeet singh, Rohit Sharma etc.
T-20 at the same time provides opportunities for the younger players to play with their idols and learn from them too. The best example can be that of the Deccan Chargers team where the players got a chance to play with their idol Adam Gilchrist. One can imagine a player’s happiness when he was told by Gilchrist at the end of an innings that it was a pleasure batting with him.
The game is indeed a magical one, fulfilling dreams of those who are on as well as off the field. It is a new trend, which seems to be good enough. It seems like T-20 is here to stay, and stay for a good reason.
N. Trikala Satya