Indian team’s coach Anil Kumble is hopeful that Test cricket will exist. Kumble said it at the launch of ‘India’s 500 Tests’ published by The Hindu Group of publications at a function in Kolkata on Sunday. “Test cricket will survive. Don’t talk about its death,” Kumble said.
“If we keep talking about the death of Tests, then one day it will happen,” said Kumble, the leading wicket-taker of the country, at a star-studded event graced by legendary players like Bishan Singh Bedi, V.V.S. Laxman, and Virender Sehwag.
Laxman said that a few imitative needs to be taken to make Test popular again. “The BCCI is giving Test cricket importance and trying to popularise it by taking it to smaller towns. It should be a day out for families to be popular.
“If you ask any youngster, he wants to watch and play T20 cricket. They want instant results. But they also want to see icons and once they see them in Test matches, I am sure there will be a clamour for the longer version of the game which has a great digital market.”
Former opener Virender Sehwag made a valid point when he appealed for preserving the current format.
“The BCCI is doing a fantastic job of taking Test cricket to smaller venues. That is the way forward. There is no need to change the format, with the pink ball experiment. When England and Australia come later, I am sure the crowds will fill the stadiums.”
BCCI president praised the daily and its sports magazine Sportstar for bringing out the book to commemorate 500 Tests. Thakur said, “The Hindu Group of publications have come out with a book which tracks India’s journey from Test 1 to Test 500. It is a treasure trove of facts, with a breathtaking pictorial back-up.
“The BCCI is indeed glad to be associated with the release of this book as it has come from The Hindu stable. So, in a way, the BCCI has found in The Hindu group a kindred soul.”
Thakur said that in order to bring more fans to the ground during a Test match BCCI is more imitative to make Test cricket more attractive.
“We can’t force people to watch a certain format but can make it attractive for them to come and enjoy Test cricket.”
“Whose interest will be served if suddenly a panel of unelected and unrepresentative administrators descend, like gods from the machine, to replace the elected office-bearers of the BCCI? Certainly not the interest of Indian cricket and the players,” he added.