Cricket, nowadays, is becoming more of a batting oriented game. Gone are the days, when bowlers (Alan Donald, Wasim Akram, Waqar Younis, Glenn McGrath, etc) position themselves on the field with their head high. But now it seems like batsman’s time. Good-length delivery on off stump line, FOUR; over-pitched delivery directed on legs, FOUR; short-length body line delivery, SIX; even well-directed Yorker is smashed towards the fence today.
In fact, International Cricket Council (ICC) itself, in order to increase the viewership, has constructed batsman-friendly pitches across Australia in this world cup. Otherwise, is that possible to see the tournament with so many 300+ scores in the pitches which are generally considered bowling-friendly for all these years? Which match you enjoyed in this world cup? Was it low-scoring thriller NZ vs. AUS or AB de’s willy-willy SA vs. WI?
Yes, we are getting highly talented batsmen, agreed. But is that it? Where are the sizzling bowlers? Where are the pouncing fielders?
Cricket is not only about batsman. It is an all-round show adjoining good talents in all departments, batting, bowling and fielding being the major one. I feel technology is solely responsible for this. As you can witness, more of technologies have come to predict the bowling standards; where he will bowl, how he will bowl and related subjects. And any thoughtful batsman for that matter can learn and adjust to the situation and hit each and every delivery, irrespective of their line and length. This ultimately causes an impingement on the game by itself. One difference I could spot in this world cup is, the batsman’s strong-zone is indicated instead of the weak - zone as compared with the 2011 World Cup. May be in this direction they are trying to portray that the technology is a boon for the game, which I don’t reckon with. Technology disturbs the game as a whole and therefore it is no way a boon to the game.
I was interrupted, while watching the match between SA vs. UAE last night, by various match analysis like batting statistics, bowler’s action & prediction, catching position, hawk eye, snick-o-meter, blah blah blah. As a cricketer, it might sound interesting to me to some extent, but as a viewer this so-called technology annoys me like anything. I even feel it as too much for a single game.
A lot has been discussed about Umpire Decision Review System (UDRS). They say that umpires tend to commit mistakes and hence we can introduce this for the betterment of the game. I agree that human errors are accepted as no one is perfect in this world. But if you see in this world cup, lots of decisions have been set down by the UDRS. And it is not all; umpires have also missed many no-balls due to which the opponents lost a game. Yes! ZIM vs. PAK!? 3 no balls have been missed by the umpire, which would have been hit at least for a six as Zimbabwe’s captain and a potential hitter, Chigumbura, was there at the crease. So 18+3 (no ball) = Zimbabwe’s victory and Pakistan out of the tournament!
Once UDRS is introduced, umpires fear their position and started giving perfect decisions as they are being challenged. But I doubt every umpire are taking it that way as most of the decisions are put down by UDRS. I sense they became too lethargic as there is a technology to back them up. Don’t you think it affects the rationale of the entire game?
Now you tell me, is technology a boon or bane for cricket world cup?
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How Cricket World Cup has changed over the years? Reviewed by T R Gowthama on 17:32 Rating: