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Friday, Oct 22, 2021
Outlook.com

20Somethings

The high-adrenaline Twenty20 is catching on elsewhere. Does India need it?

20Somethings
Matt Turner/ Newspix
20Somethings
outlookindia.com
-0001-11-30T00:00:00+05:53
Jokesters call it hit-and-giggle cricket. But it is no longer possible to dismiss what may be cricket's biggest evolution in three-and-a-half decades, even though it is yet to be introduced in the game's biggest market—the Indian sub-continent. Twenty20, which, as the name suggests, is 20 overs a side, has just broken crucial new ground.

On January 12, a staggering 20,071 people packed the WACA ground in Perth to see Western Australia beat Victoria in the first competitive Twenty20 match played in Australia. The gates were shut half an hour before the first ball. This was WACA's first full house since 1981, when the then ruling elite of cricket, the West Indies, faced Australia in a one-dayer.

The next day, January 13, a crowd of 21,254 thronged the Adelaide Oval to see Australia-A pound Pakistan by 56 runs in the first international Twenty20 match.

For two seasons, Twenty20 has been a success in England's domestic cricket, hitherto being crowded out by soccer and rugby. Now, cricket's first new fad since limited-over matches began in 1969 may have come to...
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