Following the World Cup's 6 weeks of 50 Overs cricket in February to April, the
I never thought I would say this but with
This is especially true when you consider that the 50 over format has been killed domestically.
The bidding process and feeding frenzy between the counties to stage Tests is distasteful and doesn't benefit the
Next year Old Trafford only gets an ODI and T20I and Headingley only gets a solitary ODI. The North-West and
This morning, the Chief Exec of MCC was on TMS (198LW, not this one http://www.testmatchsofa.com) and bemoaned the fact that Lords have "only" been awarded one test match for 2012 as opposed to two. Well, as per the maths above 7 into 9 doesn't go. This year and next there are three test matches in London and yet next year only one north of the Midlands, and that is in Chester-le-Street. Even with me living about as far south as you can get in the
As the MCC guy stated, the bidding process has also meant that there is huge financial pressure on the counties to break even, and he was quoting ticket prices this morning of £60 upwards for a day of test match cricket and yet they were "disappointed" to still have 1500 seats available for today’s game against Pakistan and more seats across the weekend if you turn up. These are prices far out of reach of the casual viewer especially if you factor in travel, accommodation (if you are coming from
Of course, Lords and the MCC are missing the revenue they used to get each year from two packed houses witnessing the domestic knockout trophy finals. Remember them? They used to be the pinnacle of a county cricketer’s career. Can you imagine the FA ditching the FA cup and a Wembley final in favour of a 5-a-side tourney? Thought not. However, the removal of the knockout trophies and the complete car-wreck that the domestic schedule has become is another can of worms.
What the authorities fail to realise is the precarious position in which cricket, and specifically Test cricket sits. The ECB are doing everything they can I feel to make money in the short term and accelerate the decline. Cricket needs to grab the casual fan and make test matches accessible and affordable, not price them out of the market and extort more from the dying breed of fanatics reared on free-to-air TV coverage like myself.