New Delhi: The Federation of International Cricketers’ Associations (FICA) has responded to the International Cricket Council (ICC) announcement of new International competition structures. Earlier on Friday, the ICC approved the much touted Test Championship and One-Day International League following their governing body’s meeting in Auckland.
Although, the FICA lauded the ICC’s efforts to make changes with respect to the ODI league, but they are still skeptical about the overall structure of the sport globally.
“Whilst some of what ICC has now agreed is positive, notably in regard to the ODI league, we feel that the game has missed a significant opportunity to provide real clarity and consistency to the overall global structure," said Tony Irish, Executive Chairman of FICA.
“The introduction of Test and ODI leagues to create context and sporting narrative was one these but others include, for example, the removal of the inherent conflict for players between international cricket and domestic T20 leagues, balancing all three formats of the game, removing scheduling conflicts by adopting clear internationally recognised scheduling windows, adopting a centralised approach to potential innovations such as day/night and four day Tests and developing a clear pathway and meritocratic opportunity for developing nations. These really should have been addressed in one new structure,” he added.
The FICA also raised questions over the changes in longest format of the game. The ICC has maintained that four-day Tests will provide the new Test playing countries with more opportunities to play the longer version of the game against more experienced opponents which will help them to hone their skills and close the gap with the top nine ranked teams.
However, FICA has said that it is still not clear that how four-day Tests will be advantageous in the long run.
“We are not sure of the objective of playing four day Tests right now. The format doesn’t need trialing as it’s played in most domestic first class competitions. We see the benefit that four day Tests could bring to an overall competition structure but the benefit of change is not clear if it’s not part of a structure.
In these circumstances we don’t see the need to tinker with what many treasure as part of the heritage and tradition of the game," Irish said.