Cricket is the second oldest game in the world and in terms of popularity this game is the second most popular sport in the world after football. But Cricket has never been expanded in none commonwealth countries. It will not be an exaggeration to say that cricket is more a commonwealth game than a game of non-commonwealth countries’ .
But ICC has 109 members including full-time members, associate members, and affiliated members. But in recent time, it was observed that only seven associate countries have become the big contenders to play the T20 World Cup in India. Countries like Kenya, who once qualified for the 2003 World Cup semifinal, failed to improve their performance in future.
Cricket’s strong presence in only a few countries sparked a concern among the officials of cricket and fans. Now ICC have been coming up with plans to popularize the game in other countries who are taking the game seriously. ICC’s latest plan is two-tier Test cricket system that will help associate members like Ireland and Afghanistan to play the Test cricket in the second tier against West Indies, Bangladesh, and Zimbabwe. The two-tier Test system will also give them an opportunity to qualify in the top division of the game. And if not then a super match between top division’s last team of the table and second vision’s second best team will be held. The top team from the second tier will qualify for the first division.
Here are five more innovations which will help cricket to expand the game in new countries to strengthen its foothold.