Is IPL Boon or Bane?

The game of IPL has somehow or the other, made a promising place for itself in India. With thousands of people shouting & going crazy with this format of T20, they don’t realize it’s other serious drawbacks. One of these is the present situation of Indian Cricket Test team which used to be a nightmare for world class teams like Australia, England, South Africa etc.

The golden era of Sachin, Viru, Dravid, VVS & Ganguly is still remembered for their solid technique, class & talent which shook the world of cricket. India, though, has produced some really great players like MS Dhoni, Virat Kohli, Rahane, Rohit Sharma but there is still no replacement for the masters of that golden era. What’s the reason behind the failure of these prominent players in Test Cricket even after making too much name & gaining too much of attraction in ODIs & the shorter format of the game? I think it’s the rush for runs in quick time which is depleting their natural game, influencing their batting attitude & changing their approach towards the game.

Today, it has become easy to play shots like upper cut, scoop, reverse sweeps for a six, but very difficult for them to play text book strokes, like cover drive for a four. Does it become too difficult for them to stay on the crease even for 2 or 3 hrs in a test match? The invention of these new shots have certainly lifted the game to a new level, but at the same time, the test cricket has seriously lost its true image & what it used to be known for!

Recent statistics shows that about 70% Test Matches in the world get concluded in 4 days or less. Earlier, the teams used to draw some matches and win others even against their strong opponents. The recent matches Team India played against England & Australia have witnessed some really good players struggling with their form. They don’t find it comfortable to survive even two sessions of a day with the new ball.

We have not seen a score of 600 or 700 from past many years. The average score in a test match innings has got to a restricted total of 300-400 runs. Slowly and gradually, we’ll see teams collapsing under a score of 100 & matches getting over in 2-3 days or even less, as seen in the recent Ashes series where Australia got bowled out for 60 odd runs. This is really a shame in the context of the game with the reputation of being played on an international level and that too for more than a century.

The young talent of IPL was tested in the series between India & Zimbabwe recently ,where except for a few, none of them left a mark. Even after getting exposed to the T20 format in the IPL, players were seen struggling against a team like Zimbabwe & that too in a T20 game itself! This shows that somewhere, these players are not playing for the national pride, but just enjoying this format for being paid so handsomely!

Earlier, players eagerly wanted to get selected for national team to represent their country and make their name by leaving a remark. Today, the players have already got enough on their plate through tournaments like IPL. They personally don’t want their game to develop, neither do they want to turn themselves into a “matured cricketer”. We, as cricket lovers don’t like to watch captains like MS retiring due to media pressure and because of some handful of plastic fans in the country.

Is a captain really responsible for the changing scenario, when we ourselves have depleted our Test Cricket in such a horrifying way? The upcoming matches and Test series against South Africa in the Indian subcontinent will make the picture more clear to the so called spectators & huge fans of IPL.

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