To increase the popularity of Test cricket, MCC’s World Cricket Committee led by Sri Lanka legend Kumar Sangakkara, has recommended a few measures. The Marylebone Cricket Club is also known to be responsible for designing the laws of cricket. As per the MCC, every team shall play a minimum of three-match Test series from the next ICC FTP cycle. The next Future Tours Programme cycle will start in 2028.
In the meeting held in Cape Town, the statement released by MCC mentioned the brilliant IND vs ENG Test match in Hyderabad and also the AUS vs WI Test match in Brisbane. Both the matches were an example of history and also saw a lot of cricket fans watching the match. The committee stated that the AUS vs WI Test match deserved a third decider.
The committee contains the likes of Kumar Sangakkara, former India captain Sourav Ganguly, Jhulan Goswami, Ramiz Raja, Graeme Smith, Eoin Morgan, Heather Knight, Kumar Dharamsena, and Justin Langer.
MCC suggests measures to increase the popularity of Test cricket
The statement read, “The meeting occurred in the immediate aftermath of two fantastic men’s Test matches played in Brisbane and Hyderabad, which excited supporters of the Test match format, yet also left them ruing the absence of a possible third match decider in the Australia vs West Indies two match series.In support of the thrilling Test cricket currently being played and the importance of sustaining the traditional format of the game, the WCC recommends men’s Test series be played across a minimum of three matches from the next ICC Future Tours Programme (FTP) from 2028 onwards.”
The previous IND vs SA Test series was held in December last year and also consisted of two games wherein India created history in Cape Town.
India were able to achieve a brilliant win against South Africa by seven wickets at the Sahara Park Newlands in Cape Town and also were able to level the series by 1-1. This was India’s first Test win at the Sahara Park Newlands and the series also deserved a decider.
Getting to the AUS vs WI Test match, West Indies after losing to Australia in the first Test match, were able to make a brilliant comeback in the second match of the series played in Brisbane. The Aussies lost the match by 8 runs and it was West Indies pacer Shamar Joseph who created history at ‘The Gabba’.
The popularity of Test cricket has depleted with every passing year. With the rising number of T20 leagues and white ball matches, the spectators focus on watching 50-over or T20 cricket whereas Test cricket gets hardly several people to watch a five-day match.
However, to increase the popularity of the red ball format, many steps have also been taken by the International Cricket Council. The ICC has introduced the pink ball day-night Test and also the World Test Championship to attract spectators to Test cricket. Also, players are seen playing the red ball format with names and jersey numbers behind their backs.