You’re reading about the Test when there’s Twenty20 on?

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< 1 minute read

There are two articles. One says Twenty20’s clearly going to kill Test cricket. One says that probably, on balance, that won’t happen. Newspaper editors will tend to publish the first one.

The former’s punchier and it provokes debate, so we get to read a disproportionate number of articles about how Test cricket’s in mortal danger. Our feeling is that it’s a testing time for the longer format, but that basically everything will work out fine (and we call ourself a pessimist – we should buck our ideas up in that department).

We tend to think that Twenty20 could function as a ‘gateway’ format, leading people into the game. Let’s be honest, Twenty20’s fun, but if you’re going to get into the sport properly, Tests are just fundamentally better, aren’t they? There’s just more to pore over.

There are international Twenty20 games going on at the moment. Pakistan played Sri Lanka on Saturday. Is anyone – even Pakistanis or Sri Lankans – more interested in that match than the India v Australia Tests?

Okay, India v Australia is a biggie and okay, Twenty20’s more of a club/franchise thing than an international thing – but still. We’re not saying there’s no danger and that the huge sums of money aren’t going to play a part, but we do get the feeling the whole threat thing is a bit overstated.

It’ll be fine.


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  1. I’ve got half an eye on the Twenty20, though I’m not prepared to commit more than that to a tournament involving Zimbabwe and Canada.

    Someone obviously forgot to tell Ajantha Mendis that it’s supposed to be a batsman’s game, though – two matches, 4/15 and 4/17.

  2. We don’t know about that. India-Australia Tests are talked about for long (years) after they finish. The one-dayers and Twenty20’s get a big spike of interest and then nowt.

  3. Perhaps, but comparing the most exciting Test series in ages with a competition featuring Canada and Zimbabwe is hardly fair.

    Personally, I reckon Test cricket will be around for ages (at least in some countries).

  4. We’ll concede it’s not comparing like with like, but our point is more that Twenty20 is not intrinsically crowd-pleasing.

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