Let’s start in the 80s when Botham and Willis manifested one of the greatest test matches ever. Since then, through the decades – cricket has become less popular as the years passed.
In the modern world, people seem to have developed an anchoring to be entertained as much as possible, in the shortest amount of time.
Personally, I think test cricket remains the purest, most elite format of the game. Albeit that’s simply because I love cricket in general.
The game was dying. The youth in contemporary society do not want to esit and watch five days of a test match – and they never have done in recent years. The purists can bang on about the gentrification of cricket but in reality, without the modern changes – the game would’ve become more obsolete than ever.
I must briefly mention the IPL. An abundance refer to T20 in general as glorified baseball. Perhaps it is, but the way India grasped the T20 format turning it into a global phenomenon, helped slingshot cricket back into the public’s consciousness. The way the IPL is set up is pure gentrification of the sport, but in these current times it feels natural for that process to engulf popular sports. Saying a certain club or league have sold out in a major sport is no different to the other side of this quarrelling twin coin, where the other exudes one living in delusion with the sport they love, whatever sport that is. Football over here; NFL across the pond alongside most sports in the US, but also many others, aren’t able to survive without an injection of money whether that’s from the media, sponsorships or something similar.
That’s why The Hundred will be nothing but positive for English cricket. It’s a unique tournament solely within our country. Consider how many new cricket fans were born following the World Cup final or after Stokes’ god like performance at Headingley in the Ashes. Arguably two once in a lifetime performances that attracted a new breed of cricket fans.
It’s what the hundred will do.
It may go against everything that “proper” cricket used to stand for, but that’s life now. Football has had no soul for years now but we all still watch the premier league, which is fuelled purely by money – much of it from questionably immoral sources.
Instead of being stubborn and arrogant in terms of your feelings towards this tournament, celebrate it! The one point that is impossible to argue against is how positive it’ll be for women’s cricket.
It’s cheap as chips to attend, it’s seriously entertaining and it will likely create a further new breed of cricket fans. If these new cricket fans appear and spend their money attending matches, it will only be beneficial for the ECB and English cricket in general.
If you want another Ben Stokes in the future (which we all obviously do), get behind The Hundred to help inspire the next generation of cricketers.
It isn’t a coincidence that India currently have ridiculous depth across all formats, it stems from the revenue they receive from the IPL – which is then mostly pumped back into their cricketing set up as a country. We can follow suit.
Back it. Enjoy it. It’ll only benefit our game if you do.