Cricket WT20: Time to ditch Duckworth and go back to the future!

Last night another cricket game was decided at the international level with less than 10 overs being played in the second innings of the match.

5.2 overs were all that New Zealand had to bat overnight to open their account against England in the WT20 tournament. I get that the Duckworth Lewis system is in place to allow for games to end with a result but maintain that to allow a result in a game to occur after only 5 overs is not in the interests of the game.

One of the things that fans of the shortest form of the game love is that it is a short game over in around 3 hours. In this way T20 cricket is akin to baseball for its time investment.

I think the cricket administrators need to take a leaf out of baseball’s book: in baseball where there is a rain delay and a game can not be completed, the players often return the next game to complete it or the game is recommenced at a later point, often when the teams are set to play again. Why couldn’t cricket, in the T20 form at least, take this approach?

Last night’s game would only have required about an hour to complete today. Also, consider this: the pitches in T20 are generally batter friendly and are not going to change much over night. In a tournament such as WT20 it is even easier to do this because, as there are games daily, the make up time from the day before could just be added to the start of the following day’s game.

This is nothing new in cricket either BTW: in the early days of limited overs cricket there was always a reserve day between games to alway for washed out fixtures to be recommenced (or commenced if the day was washed out).

Duckworth Lewis influenced results and games concluded after 5 overs are not good for the game. To me the solution is a no brainer: it is time for the cricket administrators to go back to the future and re-institute “spare days” OR make the game even more commoditised and allow scope for the game to be picked up on the following day in advance of that days fixture.

I am sure the players and the fans will love it and for the lessors of the stadiums will have the chance to recoup some of the funds lost by the previous day’s game finishing early. Everyone wins when the games are not finished in an artificially short time.

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