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Avoid football model, prioritise international cricket over franchise leagues: Ross Taylor

Delhi, June 27 2024-

Former New Zealand batter Ross Taylor feels international cricket can still reach the pinnacle amid the rising popularity of the T20 leagues as cricket can’t replicate football’s league model.

Since the inception of the Indian Premier League (IPL) in 2008, franchise leagues in cricket have become quite famous with some players prioritising their options in those leagues. Taylor, who has played more than 100 matches for New Zealand in every format, feels that international cricket is suffering because of the Leagues.

Taylor while speaking about the impact of Leagues in limited overs cricket shared his insights in the mini Episode 1 of the podcast series ‘180 Not Out’. “I think it’s in for an interesting 5 to 10 years at an international level. We are seeing a lot of leagues pop up around the world, the international game is sort of suffering because of that. I think we are at a crossroads.

“I hope we can still have international cricket as the pinnacle and we don’t go into a soccer model where you play soccer for your franchise, and international afterwards. I hope it’s still international cricket [first] and then the franchise model,” he said.

“I think international cricket is good, but as you evolve, I’m sure the administrators have their work cut out with technology. But here we are as we sit doing interviews, and we have no idea where we’re gonna be,” Taylor added.

Former England cricketer Kevin Pietersen also feels there is a mid-life crisis happening in the game of cricket. He also explained the reason behind his opinion. “I think there’s a mid-life crisis happening in cricket. I say that because players are starting to wobble between formats, they are thinking of playing only one format. There is so much cricket happening at the moment.

“I don’t like the fact that Australia beat India at Ahmedabad last weekend, and the Indian headlines today saying “Our revenge against Australia”. It’s so quick,” said Pietersen.

“For me, this doesn’t stack up. You should be able to win a World Cup and enjoy the World Cup. Playing a couple of days later? It doesn’t stack up. England are playing now in the Caribbean. They had a dreadful World Cup and are already playing now. I think it is midlife crisis time,” he added.

The former England skipper weighed in on the longest format of the game, expressing his concerns about Test cricket. “My fear and worry is test cricket. I hope Test cricket survives with the big nations. Here, there’s a huge marquee series, India vs England in a month’s time. Magnificent. The Ashes. Magnificent. India vs SA. Magnificent.

“If the politics can work, India vs Pakistan is huge, it breaks TV stations. Australia vs India is huge, the Border-Gavaskar trophy. All of these, the iconic [test] series, I hope they survive, and they really thrive. But there’s so much cricket now. So much,” Pietersen signed off. (Agency)

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