As the World Test Championship will kick off from 2023, the International Cricket Council(ICC) is already discussing on a reduction of the duration of tests from the current five days to four days. While The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) has spoken in favour of the four day tests, there have been a rise of counter arguments, with many preferring the legacy duration of five days. Now, Board of Control for Cricket (BCCI) president Sourav Ganguly has opened up on the matter.
Starting from the 2023 World Test Championship, ICC is likely to trim down all further test series duration in the next decade, in an attempt to reduce the strain on cricketers they they usually face in a five day cycle.
However, Ganguly believes at present, it is still very early to comment anything about the possible shortening of tests.
“First we will have to see the proposal, let it come and then we will see. It’s too early to say. Can’t comment just like this.” Dada spoke to reporters in an interview at Eden Gardens.
Reminding the success of the Day Night test cricket, it too was subjected to criticism at an early stage. However, in the long run, day night tests have increased the inclination towards the game format, which turned out more spectators in test matches. The issue of bad lighting in matches is also gone, with the usage of floodlights during night time.
Although sounding new, the idea of a four day test has been tried and tested in the past. South Africa and Zimbabwe tried the concept for the first time in the history of the game in 2017.
The most recent one took place between England and Ireland last summer. The test ended on day three, but an extension of 30 minutes was allotted on each day, that increased the total overs to be bowled to 98 from the usual 90.
The England and Wales Cricket Board has come forward with a support for the idea of four day tests. “We’re definite proponents of the four-day Test concept but cautiously so,” an ECB spokesperson said in a recent interview.
“We understand it’s an emotive topic for players, fans and others who have concerns about challenging the heritage of Test cricket,” the spokesperson added.
While reducing the complexity of year around schedule of teams and also the workloads on players, the idea of four day tests will also free up around an estimated 40 days in a calendar year.