Evolving Cricket vs. Changeless Baseball: Concerns for the Future

“I see great things in baseball. It’s our game – the American game.” Walt Whitman.

For a cricket fan, it’s easy to admire the game of baseball. But it wasn’t until I moved to Boston that I gave this particular bat and ball game even a second thought.

It didn’t take long to become immersed in their sporting culture. I was lucky enough to visit during the Red Sox 2013 World Series triumph, witnessing the true passion of the Bostonian sports fans for the first time. In my 3 years thus far, the New England Patriots have also celebrated two Super Bowl wins. They love to win in Boston and, quite often, they do prevail. They are the fans that everyone loves to hate, perhaps equitable to Manchester United supporters. Being a Newcastle United sufferer, its nice to be on the other side for a change!

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The rise of the T20 nomad

Cutting back appearances as the years advance has always been part of the arc of any sporting career. The inevitable toll of years of training and physicality spares no one and managing that decline is often the difference between maximising potential and wondering what could have been.

The last decade has seen a shift in the way most elite cricket players view the twilight years of their careers, with opportunities for players in their mid-thirties having increased exponentially since the explosion of the global T20 game. Continue reading “The rise of the T20 nomad”

Elegant Amla century not enough for Kings XI Punjab

In the last two days, we witnessed two special T20 innings from batsmen not regarded as archetypal T20 specialists. Kane Williamson made a commanding 89 off 51 balls in Sunrisers Hyderabad’s win against Delhi Daredevils on Wednesday. Hashim Amla struck a wonderful maiden T20 century (104* off 60 balls) on Thursday against Mumbai Indians.

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Better late than never

The return of the Indian Premier League is a timely reminder of how ECB’s recent plans to implement a city-based T20 tournament can’t come soon enough.

We’re well underway. Six weeks of seemingly back-to-back T20 coverage, played out in front of arguably the most passionate fans in world cricket. Views on the impact of the T20 over the last 20 years are as diverse as this year’s rosters but there can be no denying that, when it comes to box office entertainment for the sporting masses, the IPL continues to blaze the trail. Continue reading “Better late than never”