IPL is here to stay: Zaheer Abbas

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src='http://www.ndtv.com/convergence/images/thumbnail/ver1/i/ipllogonew.jpg' class='caption'> Zaheer Abbas feels the IPL is here to stay as the T20 extravaganza has caught the imagination of the masses like no other cricket tournament before it.

Updated: April 26, 2008 08:19 IST
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The purists may scoff at it but former Pakistan captain Zaheer Abbas feels the Indian Premier League is here to stay as the cash-rich twenty20 extravaganza has caught the imagination of the masses like no other cricket tournament before it.

"Looking at the way the people are taking to Twenty20 cricket I am sure it has a bright future and is here to stay," Zaheer said on Saturday.

He said the growing number of spectators in IPL matches was a big boost for cricket itself which could now be promoted globally.

"After the success of Indian cricket League and now the IPL, I think even those players and purists who don't like this form of the game and think it will harm traditional cricket have been forced to take to it and support it. They have no other option," he said.

Zaheer, however, felt batsmen would gain nothing from Twenty20 cricket.

"There is no technique required in this form only that player is successful who can lash out big sixes and fours. I pity the bowlers. The best of them are mauled and I sympathise with them because in four overs they don't even find their rhythm properly," he explained.

"Even the skills of the best bowlers are wasted in this form of the game. I think any bowler who can take three wickets in Twenty20 cricket has achieved something big because when the batsmen are willing to take risks even the best bowlers are helpless," Zaheer said.

Zaheer said administrators needed to seriously assess the popularity of Twenty20 cricket because of its short duration.

"It shows people nowadays prefer sports which end quickly and are packaged with entertainment."

The former skipper saw nothing wrong in making changes in the rules and introducing new concepts in cricket to make it more saleable and watchable.

"It happens in every sport changes have to be made to meet the demands of the time. I support any form of the game which brings in more crowds and is popular," he said.

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