Former Australia captain Aaron Finch has suggested a major change to the ODIs to revamp the format as it has started losing its charm after the emergence of the fast-paced T20I format. The ODI format has lagged behind in recent times despite a successful World Cup event in India last year.
The duration of the match has backfired for the 50-over format as the fans have started preferring T20Is, while the World Test Championship has also boosted Test cricket’s popularity back.
Australia T20 World Cup-winning captain Finch has suggested the 50 overs is slow and it’s time to tweak the format with 40 overs per side match similar to England’s NatWest Pro40 League.
“I think it goes to 40 overs, I’d love to see that in England, they used to have the pro-40 and that was a huge competition. I think the game’s gone too long, in my opinion. The speed which the teams bowl their 50 overs is so slow, it’s down around 11 or 12 overs/hour and that’s not acceptable. People will argue that maybe it’s a glorified T20 game but it’s about the crowds,” Finch told ESPNcricinfo.
Meanwhile, the first ODI Word Cup in 1975 was played as a 60 overs per side contest but the format was tweaked to 50 overs per side in 1987.
Batting great Sachin Tendulkar also gave a suggestion on the same lines a couple of years ago where he suggested 40 overs per side contest divided into two innings for every team (20 overs in each inning).
Former Australia cricketer Calum Ferguson feels that the heavyweights should continue playing the 50-over-a-side contests but the 40-over-a-side can be tried with the low-ranked sides.
“I am not quite sold on that for every series. I think when you’ve got the big dogs all playing against each other, I still think the 50-over game’s electric, and the ebbs and flows are wonderful but when they are so one-sided, when you’ve got the West Indies… who are trying to fight their way back into the World Cup, they are so off the track, I think 40 overs might suit that type of series, it might bring them closer together,” Ferguson said.