Monday, November 29, 1999

Australia seeks player feedback on split-innings experiment

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Melbourne, Jun 18 (PTI) Australian players will have their say on the "practicality" of having split-innings one-dayers that Cricket Australia is planning before the concept is actually introduced in the domestic Ford Ranger Cup competition next year. "Australian cricketers'' ideas on reviewing one-day cricket will be captured in a roadshow before Cricket Australia seeks to finalise concepts for a new-look Ford Ranger Cup competition next summer," CA said in a statement. Cricket Australia Chief Executive Officer James Sutherland said Australian and state players will provide their feedback on the split-innings one-day cricket. "We will show players, including those now on the Tour of England, the public research," he said. "Cricket lovers say that ODI cricket captures the broadest interest of the three formats, and it is supported with strong passion, but it is a game that needs better positioning and a format review if it is to remain popular in the long-term," he added. CA is planning to split the 50-over matches into four innings in a bid to bring back the spectators, who have given the format a cold shoulder since the advent of Twenty20 cricket. "There has been a lot of public discussion since the CA board last week approved we go ahead with a format review, but this is still a work-in-progress," Sutherland said. "The idea of split innings was popular with fans and we are keen at this stage to look at a 10 wickets-a-side, split-innings concept to see if it is feasible from public, player, broadcaster and commercial partners'' points of view. "We need to listen to what the public wants but we also need to be sure that ideas are practical, and most important, are acceptable to world cricket and capable in the long-term of being considered for international cricket," he added. CA and the Australian Cricketers'' Association will meet players around the nation this month and the Australian squad in England will also be invited to provide feedback. "Consolidated public, player, broadcaster and commercial partner feedback will then go to CA''s playing conditions committee to assess what a new-look, one-day format for interstate cricket next summer should look like," CA said. PTI PM AY.

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