Save domestic T20s
The IPL is just around the corner and everybody’s excited. We talk about our stars all the time but what about those who’ve just made the cut, the hardworking boys from different backgrounds for whom the tournament serves as a launch pad. Ravi Shastri categorically stated after Indian won the 2011 World Cup that the IPL deserves some credit no matter what the purists say.
He’s right because it sustained the incomes of the stars but more importantly the upcoming cricketer. Let’s cast a look at an exciting tournament in Indian domestic cricket, only less popular among fans because it are not telecast live – The Syed Mushtaq Ali trophy.
Syed Mushtaq Ali was a dynamic Indian batsman from the black and white era and stood out because it was deemed almost faulty to have an aggressive attitude to batting. Of course, back then, batting meant grafting. But how the man would have reveled in today’s T20. Anyway, move to a completely different era a half century later and the BCCI graciously decided to name the indigenous T20 inter-state tournament after him. This is another ‘IPL.’ So, this cricketing year, 2011-12, our lads (Karnataka) battled out , among them Mayank, Rajoo and others with of course the excitement of having our ex RCB players team up. So, this tournament’s typical matches are Karnataka Vs Tamil Nadu or Mumbai Vs Delhi and so on.
The tournament has come in for some review by the critical press because the league and knockouts were separated by many months! Sure, but abandoning the tournament is a probably not a great idea. T20 as a format is exciting, is here to stay, and is filling up the player’s pockets. Mind you not just the stars, but boys from hamlets hoping to improve. The value of that money is more than the crores that a star gets as contract money.
If any tourney needs to come on the chopping block, then it’s some of the outdated trophies started in the 1950s and 1960s. Not the Ranji Trophy of course (1930-40s) but nevertheless let’s not stir the hornet’s nest. There are a lot of us that have sentimental value for old tournaments. But remember, the annual calendar needs to be shrunk; the senior players are not getting any real rest before quality international cricket.
Anyway, It’s for the BCCI to take a closer look. The Mushtaq Ali Trophy is a breeding ground. Players can play under less pressure here, bond well with their franchise teammates where applicable and in any case has a truly state-based feel.
Anyway, now let’s look forward to a great performance from our RCB lads in the IPL.