Batting legend Sachin Tendulkar has suggested an innovation of the 50-over format, stating that an ODI game be divided into four innings of 25 each to increase the popularity of the format. In 2009, Tendulkar had mooted a similar idea, which was not implemented despite the ICC considering his views.
Backing his thoughts, Sachin once again came forth with the idea in an exclusive chat with TOI, stating that Indian domestic One-Day tournaments like the Syed Mushtaq, Challenger Trophy and the Duleep Trophy could test the suggestion.
“The 50-over format is the first thing that needs a look-in. “As I had suggested, the format needs a tweak of two innings of 25 overs per side with a 15-minute break between each innings (a total of four innings between two teams). The number of innovations that can be brought in, are huge,” he added.
“Let’s say there’s a 50-over-a-side match between Team A and Team B. Team A wins the toss, bats 25 overs; then team B bats for 25 overs; Team A resumes innings (with whatever wickets left) from the 26th over; Team B then resumes the last innings to chase the target. If Team A has lost all their wickets within the first 25 overs itself, then Team B gets 50 overs (25 overs plus 25 overs with a break) to chase the target,” he explained.
He went on to add that instead of making the first 10 overs of the 25 overs as the Powerplay overs, the first 5 could constitute the powerplay instead. He also added that the bowling side could take three overs of the powerplay when they wished, leaving two overs of powerplay for the batting side.
“The six extra balls for bowling Powerplay will balance the battle between the bat and ball,” he said. “It’ll be exciting for the viewers because teams will constantly rethink strategies.
“If a batting side has consumed seven overs of Powerplay (five mandatory and remaining two), and have a pinch-hitter waiting to come out yet, they could hold the batsman back until the fresh mandatory Powerplay will begin from the 26th over. Or, if the bowling Powerplay is on and two offspinners are on strike and batting side loses a wicket, a ‘nightwatchman’ can walk out to see off those overs”.