One Day International cricket’s decline has been the subject of many think pieces for a while—roughly more than a decade. Since the last ODI World Cup, white-ball cricket has had a huge change. The first big ODI match in 2023 will feature players who are unfamiliar with the format.
But ever since the start of various T20 leagues around the world, the ODI format seems to lose its charm. The same happened during the opening game of the CWC 2023 at Ahmedabad.
With a century of dominance, it is difficult to see Test cricket going away any time soon. The sport’s main source of revenue is and will continue to be T20 cricket. But cricket in 50 overs? How large of a hole would it leave if it vanished tomorrow?
Is 50-over cricket losing its relevance?
The 50-over format is the “most boring” and “soon to be redundant,” as per Gaurav Kapur, the popular face of India’s cricket broadcast. He made this comment on the Grade Cricketer podcast on YouTube. He says how the “pointless” ODI series of 3 matches had lost its significance.
The first 10 and the last 10 overs of an ODI match are what the fans want to see. The middle overs are like “a government job,” where the batting side and bowling side take it easy and agree to go at a run rate of five runs per over. This is how Kapur puts the viewpoint of those who want to do away with the 50-over format.
During the India-Sri Lanka ODI in Karyavattom, Yuvraj Singh tweets his concern about the “half empty” stadium. He also questions if One Day Cricket was on its last legs. Singh is not the first to alarm us about this.
Players like Moeen Ali, Ben Stokes, Aaron Finch, Usman Khawaja, Adam Zampa, and Irfan Pathan have voiced their concerns about the future of ODIs.
Has ICC failed to market the ODI World Cup 2023 & ODI Cricket?
The ODI World Cup theme songs help in raising excitement for the event. In the weeks leading up to the games, every channel played the 2011 World Cup’s anthem, “De Ghuma Ke.”
The theme song for the 2023 edition, “Dil Jashn Bole,” which was by Pritam features Ranveer Singh riding a quick train. The song has not gone down well among cricket fans. The song’s most popular comment, which was posted on the ICC’s official YouTube page, may capture the mood: “This song hits differently on mute.”
While other ODI World Cup songs focus on the sport, this one made me think of a Bollywood movie song because. It was so dance-heavy and shows little care for the other teams playing in the event. How, for example, should ‘Dil Jashn Bole’ resonate with a cricket fan in Johannesburg or Sydney?
Sincerely, it’s not just the song. This World Cup’s buildup appears quite uninteresting.
Buy tickets, an ‘impossible’ task
It takes a lot of planning to watch a cricket match. You must first buy a match ticket before buying an airline or rail ticket to get to the host city. Both duties are now very tough by the BCCI.
First, 9 games—or one-sixth of all group-stage matches—were rescheduled. That includes the very awaited first-round match between India and Pakistan. The current ODI World Cup champions, England are hit with the most impact. Three of their nine matches had to be rescheduled.
A small number of match tickets were available on the BookMyShow website, which brings us to our second point. Fans bemoaned the terrifying process of trying to buy tickets for the main event.
They say that tickets were already “sold out” before the official sale even started. Fans also complained about hours-long waits in internet lines. To put things in view, the Narendra Modi Stadium, which has a seating capacity of more than 1.3 lakh people, only made 8,500 tickets available for the India-Pakistan game.
“Either this is another eyewash or the ticket partners cannot handle the traffic and tickets. Hope a proper audit of how, to whom, and on what platform the tickets are sold is done, said former cricketer Venkatesh Prasad on X (formerly Twitter).
The ODI World Cup is going nowhere
But after everything, the ODI World Cup will still draw love and attention despite all of its problems. The sport will always have ardent supporters, that much is certain. The fans will only see what the 22 players do on the pitch. Not what occurs off of it. In contrast to the current Indian government’s decision to delay visas for Pakistani players, it will be an iconic moment and show that will live forever.