MCG picture hints at demise of beloved 50-over cricket custom after Australia Vs West Indies sequence


If Travis Head snicks off within the forest and no one is there to listen to it, does it make a sound?

And even when it does, is it heard by anybody bar a handful of members and Snicko?

These are the questions reverberating across the nation’s empty stadia after one other Aussie ODI summer season began in anonymity on Friday earlier than a quarter-filled, half-closed MCG.

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Whereas a crowd of simply over 16,000 for a conflict with the West Indies was no disgrace by fashionable requirements, seeing a global one-dayer staged in a venue with the complete higher deck closed would’ve had Kerry Packer pelting his kebab towards the wall of heaven’s excessive rollers lounge.

And with the sport additionally lacking from free-to-air broadcasters and barely marketed, it was one other instance of ODI cricket’s fashionable life as nothing greater than a pesky obligation.

With the format on a march to an osteoporotic demise, followers are beginning to ask: What occurred to our beloved sport?

The place is cricket’s supposed deference to custom?

And has any individual considered the youngsters, and even only a cerebral run chase with a required fee of 4.52?

Everybody agrees that mistreating ODI cricket is unconstitutional — particularly these aged 25-52 with crippling nostalgia — however seemingly no one needs to do something about it.

As soon as the most popular ticket on the town, ODI’s are actually cricket’s model of the brand new Simpsons or the third-place playoff on the World Cup — content material for content material’s sake.

A one-time money cow, 50-over cricket is now so innocuous the general public seeks it out with as a lot apathy as Outlook performing a reputation search.

Nonetheless, as the primary likelihood to witness our nationwide aspect in motion since changing into world champions, this sequence towards the Windies had the uncommon potential to be considerably interesting.

With a modicum of polish, it may’ve been offered as a homecoming tour that paraded our World Cup triumph by beating up on a workforce that wasn’t adequate to qualify.

However alas, it has been lazily promoted by directors and handled like a lab experiment by selectors, successfully producing an underground rest-fest so heavy on rec go away even coach Andrew McDonald has been given a spell.

Whereas acknowledging the necessity for top-line gamers to be given time away from the sport, it’s simple the nationwide aspect loses enchantment when it’s a bastardised crossbreed of family names and demo’s.

And with 50-over cricket’s possibilities to seize the creativeness changing into extra restricted with each new franchise league, it desperately wants its stars on-deck to make each put up a winner.

However within the modern-day, asking cricketers to play cricket is usually past the cheap.

As such, it means outdoors of an India sequence performed within the shadow of the BCCI’s authorized workforce, residence ODI’s are actually a box-ticking train saved for beefing-up batting averages and testing rookies at nighttime.

Will it ever change? Probably not.

The Bible was 100 per cent correct when it warned “The street to hell is paved with meaningless ODI’s”, primarily as a result of the street it referred to was the Future Excursions program.

The ICC’s well-intentioned two-year schedule goals to appease all stakeholders – aka India – by shoehorning as many worldwide matches as attainable in to the slim home windows left by the franchise leagues, leading to sequence like this which can be as hastened and weightless because the trophies they’re fought for.

And with no abatement of the sport’s love of T20 and money seemingly forthcoming, directors will proceed to see ODI cricket as one huge Mexican wave.

Until the ICC phases two World Cups a 12 months – now unique to Amazon – these bilateral sequence will proceed to be a baneful activity of mass disengagement and floods of debuts so torrential, even you and I’ll most likely earn a call-up.

Dane Eldridge is a warped cynic craving for the glory days of rugby league, a time when the sponges had been magic and the Mondays had been mad.

He’s by no means strapped on a boot in his life, and as such, must be taken with a grain of salt.

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