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Rediff.com  » Cricket » Tendulkar suggests changes in ODI format in letter to Lorgat

Tendulkar suggests changes in ODI format in letter to Lorgat

Last updated on: September 20, 2011 18:22 IST

One-Day Internationals are perceived to be on the decline, and none other than Sachin Tendulkar has come out publicly in support of revamping the current 50-over format in a letter to ICC Chief Executive Haroon Lorgat.

Tendulkar, the world's highest run-getter in both Tests and ODIs, wants the ICC to make "a radical switch" from 50-50 to four 25-over innings.

Apart from reducing the number of overs per innings, he has also proposed several more changes for ODIs.

Sachin TendulkarThe Indian batting icon, who is on the threshold of a 100 international centuries' milestone, had spoken about this new concept in television interviews in the past, but never written to the ICC in this regard.

"I have been capturing my thoughts on what I think would be the way forward to ensure that all three formats in the game co-exist and ensure value creation," he wrote in the letter, seen by The Times.

He argued that four alternate innings of 25 overs for each side in an international would be the fairest way of balancing the advantages gained by the team that won the toss, when pitch and weather conditions mean that a match can virtually be decided by the spin of a coin.

Tendulkar's letter also proposed changes in voluntary Powerplays.

In each 25-over block, Tendulkar wants only two Powerplays at the behest of the batting side, but suggested that up to four bowlers should be allowed up to 12 overs each, rather than the present limit of 10.

A prominent match India lost following the spin of the coin was the 1996 Wills World Cup semi-final, when Sri Lanka batted first on a square turner.

The match was awarded to Sri Lanka after an unruly crowd stopped proceedings when India lost eight wickets.

Again, Sri Lanka were unlucky when they were forced to chase a large Australia total in fading light towards the end of the 2007 World Cup final in Barbados.

Tendulkar also cited two games in the most recent World Cup, when evening dew helped England achieve a tie in their classic qualifying game against India in Bangalore, but then counted in favour of Ireland during their famous run chase against England at the same venue.

A split into two equal innings-a-side was often proposed for the final of the domestic county competition in the UK -- originally the Gillette Cup -- in the days when it was invariably an advantage to field first, the report said.

The hover cover, instant outfield drainage and sophisticated drying equipment have ensured that matches at Lord's almost always start on a dry pitch these days, but that is not the case everywhere.

In Australia, last winter, the inter-state One-day tournament, the Ryobi Cup, was played over 45-overs-a-side, split into two alternate innings of 20 overs followed by two of 25.

The format was generally rated a success by Cricket Australia (CA). There were more close finishes, more runs, more wickets and larger TV audiences.

Significantly, the new regulations appeared to overcome the relatively dull and predictable middle-over phases of 50-over games.

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