Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Champions League cricket

So, Chennai romped home, beating the Warriors in the Champions League T20 final game. Indeed, they have been the team to beat ever. They have been the most consistent team since the dawn the T20/IPL/CL era. The reached the final of IPL 2008, semi final on IPL 2009. winners of IPL 2010 and now CL 2010 winners. I don’t care if people call Dhoni lucky, over-optimistic, talks-too-much captain. To me, he has delivered, he has won matches, as captain of the India and as the captain of CSK. So, congrats to MSD and congrats to CSK.

Coming to the popularity of the CL T20, or the lack of it, I think it would be unfair and makes no sense to compare it with Champions League Football. The CL football has a long, rich history (started in 1955). The Champions League Final, football, is the most watched annual event, drawing more than 100 million viewers. To compare an event more than 50 years old with one that is hardly two or three years old is, as I said, wasteful.

So, what can be done to increase its popularity and make it more meaningful?

Well, for starters, we cannot have new auctions every 3 or 4 years. I am talking about IPL here. There is, as you might know, going to be a new auction window before the next IPL, which would see all the teams being re-shuffled. While, Sachin and Dhoni have stated that they want to hold on to as many players as possible, only time will tell how successful they can be. Even so, the idea of having fresh auctions every 3 years is not a great idea. One of the things that makes Champions League football and club football in general so special is the traditions of the clubs, the rivalries between clubs, the “animosity” between the fans. A player has to think a million times before he makes a switch from Real Madrid to Barcelona. Athletic Bilbao, for example, is a team that recruits only home-grown players. As I said, we do need to give it some time to create rivalries between teams. But random re-shuffling of players every other year is not going to help the cause in anyway.

Then, you have the case of one player playing for different clubs and choosing the “bigger” club in the Champions League for obvious reasons. E.g: Jacques Kallis plays for the Warriors and also for the RCB (Bangalore). In the CL he chose to play for Bangalore. (It is a different matter that he was injured and dint play in the CL) Now, that is something for organizers to look at. Surely, a player must give preference to the local team/ team of his nationality. I would not like to see a situation where Kallis is taking 3-fors and scoring fifties against his own Warriors, or Ross Taylor taking apart the Central Districts. They should only be allowed to chose the “bigger” team if their local team did not make it to the CL.

The idea of “home and away” games also seems tasty. While the Sri Lankan (Wayamba), New Zealand (Central Districts) and West Indian (Guyana) teams were outplayed by the the CSKs and the RCBs, it would be interesting to see how, e.g South Australia would would play Wayamba on a slow-low turner at Galle. Can Suresh Raina play his pick-ups and hoicks against Central Districts on a green top at Napier? I know, it will be difficult to have teams travel all over in such a short period of time. But, this is just an idea that the organizers could keep in mind and try to implement.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hey Thanks a lot For sharing the information..........

I like T20 games a lot......

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