Jones recipe to revive ODIs: Play T20 but like Test

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src='' class='caption'> Former Australian batsman Dean Jones has offered his recipe to revive ODIs suggesting a 40-over game with features of both Twenty20 and Test cricket.

Updated: September 05, 2009 08:32 IST
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Former Australian batsman Dean Jones has offered his recipe to revive One-Day Internationals suggesting a 40-over game with features of both Twenty20 and Test cricket.

Jones said fans are bored of this format and unless some drastic changes are made on 50-over game, there will be only Test and Twenty20 cricket left.

"The future of 50-over One-Day Internationals is in serious trouble. Already the England and South African cricket boards have deleted this form of cricket from their domestic fixtures. Cricket Australia has one more year left with its Ford sponsorship of the domestic 50-50 competition, and who knows what will happen after that?" Jones said.

"One-Day Internationals need to get sexy again. The fans are bored with them, particularly between overs 15 to 40. The ICC needs to make some radical changes soon to ODIs, or Twenty20 will kill the original golden goose of cricket," he wrote in his column for 'The Age'.

Jones threw up two proposals, the first changing the one-dayers into Test-Twenty20 format, which he prefers, and the second playing it in four innings of 20 overs each.

"Play Test-Twenty20 cricket. That is, both teams would have two innings. Each innings is 20 overs long and compulsory closure is enforced," Jones wrote.

"This is a better game than the original Twenty20 format as both teams have a second chance if they play poorly in the first innings."

"A good game of Twenty20 relies heavily on the team batting first to make a good score. If they don't, then the game can be a bore. The game would take the same amount of time to play as the original ODIs," Jones said.

The former Australian middle order mainstay also felt this format would also allow the fans to watch players like Ricky Ponting and Sachin Tendulkar bat twice in one day.

"In day-night ODIs, Cricket Australia loses a lot of revenue when fans don't turn up after work if Australia bats first. People prefer to watch the batsmen than the bowlers. In this Test-Twenty20 format they can turn up after work and watch both teams bat and bowl in the second innings," he said.

His alternative suggestion was to change the game from 50 to 40 overs each side, with two innings of 20 overs.

"I played this form of the game and loved it. I have always thought that the 50-over format was 10 overs too long.

One major change: there would be four quarters to this match. Two white balls per innings. That means one new ball at each end from the start of each innings.

"When 20 overs are completed by Team A then Team B would start its innings and bat for 20 overs. Then Team A would re-commence and bat out 20 overs, with Team B then attempting to chase down the score. Thus, four-quarters concept.

"By playing this way it would stop any advantage of the toss with a dicey pitch or average weather conditions. Fans or viewers turning up late would at least see both teams bat and bowl. Bowlers get eight overs each and the usual fielding restrictions for the first 15 overs."

Jones also said instead of awarding six runs to a batsman for clearing the ropes via aerial route, eight runs should be given.

"Anyone can hit a four. Anyone. But to hit a ball in the air and carry a 70-metre boundary takes technique, timing and strength.

"Don Bradman realised the risk was not worth it to go for a six - that's why he hit the ball along the ground and only hit six sixes in his Test career.

"To risk your wicket for an extra two runs was simply not worth it. So make it worth it. I think an eight is fair and reasonable," he wrote.

He also wanted to do away with overthrow runs if the fielder hits the stumps or for a throw deflecting off a batsman or umpire.

Jones think that time has come to have three umpires on the ground in international cricket.

"One umpire would stand at the bowler's end, one at square leg and the other umpire side-on at the bowler's end watching for no-balls. This would allow the umpire at the bowler's end to concentrate on the speed and line of the delivery and not worry about the bowler's feet," he said.

"This will give the umpires that spilt second of time they crave for to make better decisions. Umpires would also rotate every innings."

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