18 May 2024 last updated at 10:26 GMT
LKM Blogs
CWC2015 Done but is Cricket Dying a Slow Death?
Lalit K Modi

So Australia have won the world cup title for the fifth time. Congratulations to a cricketing nation that has excelled across generations thanks largely to their depth in talent. 

The Indian cricket team may have lost in the semi-final but there is no disgrace in losing to a better side.

India should be proud of their young side that has come good despite all the odds. Who among us gave them the chance to come this far? None, so let’s be proud of what they have achieved.

There may be many questions asked about the way India lost in the semi-final, but a chase of 328 was always going to be difficult. They had their opportunities, but the critics cannot seem to see that there are always two sides to a story.

The 2015 World Cup is done, but one question that begs to be answered is that despite a successful World Cup is world cricket ALIVE and kicking? Or will the game of cricket, as we know it die a slow and painful death if the ICC does not wake up soon and smell the winds of change blowing through the air.

I hark back at the ICC mission, which was to proliferate and popularize the game of cricket to different parts of the world. But given that the game global administrator especially the head honcho and devil-in-chief Srinivasan is busy saving his own chair, will the ICC be able to this any more?

The world cup has been the perfect example of why the game is going to die very soon if the ICC does not do anything. The associates are demanding more contests but the Full Members led by the axis of evil - Australia, England, and India, are denying them every possible opportunity!! Especially since these three countries think playing with each other and ignoring the rest will help rake in the moolah.

How will this continue to be a world game if three countries get better and better and the gap between the other nations keeps increasing? Let us look at the Associates first, how are Afghanistan and Ireland to improve if they continue playing only against each other? As ODI teams, as I am told they are, should they not be playing more regularly against the big boys of world cricket? But sadly the ICC is not looking at this aspect of the game. Somehow raking in the money has become more important than developing the game. How will the moolah come in the near future if the popularity of the game keeps shrinking; and in correlation to that so does the games global fan base?

For all those who are interested  -ICC has 106 members, but for all practical purposes they have just six proper members. Cricket is dying a slow death everywhere else. What else explains the fall of West Indies as a relevant entity, cricket will soon be extinct in Pakistan if they do not play at home, and Zimbabwe is slipping every single day. But the world cricket community keeps watching in silence.

There is simply no cohesive strategy to ensure that the game keeps growing and at the same time, the existing full members keep fighting along. The need of the hour is for world cricket's new members to be given more opportunities to play the game against the best-of-the-best so that they can improve and later challenge the old order. Only then will the popularity of the game increase and its fan base in tandem, which in my mind is what the game desperately needs at this juncture.

But what is the motivation for an Srinivasan controlled ICC and BCCI to support the growth of world cricket through say the promotion of associate teams like an Afghanistan or an Ireland on the world stage. Alas myopia is a disease they we have long suffered in world cricket and it begs that we ask the question is the Game of Cricket truly dying a slow and painful death? Or is it just simply a case of ABSOLUTE POWER CORRUPTING ABSOLUTELY bringing about the death of cricket….

The World Cup in 2019 is now being brought down to just ten teams, which means even lesser opportunities for Associates. That in my mind is a death knell for world cricket. Most associate nations I fear will lose interest in the sport.

The ICC, BCCI, England and Australia are happy being this big boys club where only a select few have entry. If cricket continues to remain a closed shop I seriously fear that the game will disintegrate into oblivion.

A sad fate indeed for the gentleman’s game…


Follow my thoughts on the BCCI crisis through my Twitter account @lalitkmodi
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