England all-rounder Moeen Ali stated that 50-over cricket is not sustainable. He fears that ODIs will be lost in a couple of years because of it’s long and boring nature.
“At the moment it’s not sustainable in my opinion. Something has to be done because I fear losing the 50-over format in a couple of years because it’s almost like the long, boring one if that makes sense”, he said.
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Ali believes that there’s schedule for T20 and Tests but 50-over format hangs unattended without any importance.
“It’s almost like you’ve got T20s, you’ve got the Test matches, which are great and then the 50 overs is just in the middle – there’s no importance given to at the moment”, he added.
Three years ago, Ali was part of England’s World Cup squad which lifted the winning trophy in 2019 under Eoin Morgan’s leadership. He was also used in five matches of the home tournament.
However, this year England have only played nine ODIs and have no more scheduled for the rest of 2022 with Test cricket and T20s taking precedence. They have to play in World Cup next year in India but ahead of that Ali feels that interest in the format is not the same as it was.
He said, “It just feels like it’s going that way and there’s nothing almost you can do because I think the interest in 50-over cricket is not there as it probably once was.”
“So yeah, having won it in 2019 it’s a difficult one because I genuinely feel in two to three years time, nobody’s going to want to play it,” he added.
Ali is currently leading Birmingham Phoenix in the Hundred and said that there’s not much interest in such tournaments as well.
“It’s a bit like our domestic stuff here at the moment, there’s the Hundred while the 50-over is going on and there’s not that much interest in it compared to the County Championship, the Vitality Blast and the Hundred.”
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The franchise-league cricket has taken over the cricket world. With two more to be added in January in South Africa and the United Arab Emirates, Ali mentioned that it is obvious for players to retire and there will be more of them to announce retirement in coming years. He said that the 50-over format will have to face the consequences in such scenario.
“International cricket in all three formats is by far the best cricket to play. There’s no doubt about that, but I do worry there are so many tournaments out there that players are retiring more now and you’ll see more retiring soon.”
“So yeah, I think there’s too much. Personally I feel like there’s too much going on,” he said.
Recently, his teammate Ben Stokes announced his retirement from the 50-over format citing the “unstainable” schedule with England set to play three Tests against South Africa this autumn before a tour to Pakistan containing seven T20s followed by T20I World Cup in October.
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Ali also announced his retirement from Test cricket last year before admitting that he might look for a comeback given the exciting environment created by England red-ball captain Stokes and new head coach Brendon McCullum.
While talking about whether players will turn their back to the longest form of cricket or not, Ali said, “If you’re a young player coming through, there’s so much to be made money wise away from international cricket as well, so you’re almost like ‘I’m not too bothered’ because in terms of money, you lose that hunger and I think you lose that thing for Test cricket, which is the absolute pinnacle.”
Further, “There’s so many good players out there that could easily just turn around and turn their backs a little bit on Test cricket, not turn their backs but not be worried that they need to play Test cricket.”
Currently, this summer, KP Snacks, Official Team Partner of The Hundred, are touring the country to offer more opportunities for people to play cricket as part of their ‘Everyone In’ campaign.
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