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Monday, Oct 18, 2021
Outlook.com

The Sweet Spot

A 500-run feast? All sorts of heroics are possible this World Cup.

The Sweet Spot
The Sweet Spot
outlookindia.com
-0001-11-30T00:00:00+05:53

There is something vaguely disturbing about a batter scoring a century in 31 balls in international cricket. A.B. de Villiers finished with 149 off 44 deliveries for South Africa against the West Indies. A couple of months earlier, India’s Rohit Sharma had shown what was possible while making a world record 264 off 173 deliveries against Sri Lanka. It was only ten fewer than the Sri Lankan team made in the final of the 2011 World Cup. 

The T20-fication of the 50-over game is nearly complete. Once teams begin to score 400-plus consistently, it might even signal the end of the 50-over game. The Guardian’s Mike Selvey expects a score of 500 to be reached when India play Zimbabwe in Auckland.

On a recent visit there, I saw why. The straight boundaries in this essentially rugby ground are depressingly short. Would a score of 500-plus be seen as a triumph, or will it cause the lawmakers to make changes in favour of the bowlers? The two most recent changes—rules under which the World Cup will be played—have merely added to the batsman’s...

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