Sri Lanka will stay committed to 50 overs cricket

“In spite of growing concerns about the viability of 50-overs cricket developing around the World, Sri Lanka will stay committed to all ICC accepted norms of cricket” says the secretary of Sri Lanka Cricket Nishantha Ranatunga.

Nishantha Ranatunga

He said that he was aware of changes taking place in countries England and South Africa, but Sri Lanka will keep looking for avenues for improving the game in all departments, however their main emphasis will be on improving the standard of Test cricket in the country.

Ranatunga said “Though Sri Lanka does not stand to make profits off the Test cricket version accept when they play against 1-2 countries, they would still keep their focus on the most established segment of the game”.

At present Sri Lanka lies at the second spot in the ICC standings in Test cricket and if they go on win this game today against New Zealand they would confirm their position in this slot.

Though Sri Lanka stand in second place they share the same points – 119 with their neighbours India with Australia slipping down to the forth Place after their Ashes crash against England last week. South Africa tops the World rakings in Test as well as ODI version of the game.

However, surprisingly Cricket South Africa has resolved to investigate innovative ways to improve the domestic limited-overs product following concern from different quarters that the domestic 45-over game is in danger with the growth in popularity of the Twenty20 format.

Cricket 365 reported that at a meeting held during CSA's first-ever Annual Conference in Johannesburg, the Board decided that the first round of the MTN Domestic Championship in the 2009-10 season would remain 45-overs a side but the second round of the competition may change in terms of new competition rules.

At a recent ICC Executive Board meeting in London, there was a recommendation from the ICC Cricket committee that changes to the current ODI format be considered to ensure that the product remains commercially viable and that spectator interest and television audiences are retained. The 2009-10 edition of the domestic one-day competition is due to get underway on October 28 when the Highveld Lions host the Cape Cobras at the Wanderers.

The Board will make a decision prior to the commencement of the second round of competition.
Meanwhile according ANI news agency Stand-in England skipper Paul Collingwood has lamented that he is both mystified and angry over the England and Wales Cricket Board’s decision to cancel 50-over cricket from the 2010-11 season.

"County cricket should mirror internationals. If players are not playing 50-over cricket, that will be a hindrance," Collingwood said. The ECB have succumbed to the counties, who find the current Pro40 event easier to sell to fans. ECB chairman Giles Clarke defended the decision.

He said: "South Africa, the world`s leading one-day team, do not mirror 50 overs in their own domestic season." The Twenty20 competition will have two pools of nine, which will be based on a north-south split.

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