With dissent rising amongst the stalwarts of the game over the use of two white balls in ODI cricket, ICC has finally decided to do something about it.
ODI the only format which sees changes in the playing conditions by the time a World Cup arrives in four years. While ICC has invested heavily in the machinery to popularize T20s and Test cricket, ODIs are struggling to strike the balance between being entertaining and competitive.
Sachin Tendulkar, Virat Kohli and many other players of the game have called ICC out on their use of two new balls in an ODI game. This takes away the reverse swing especially when two new balls are used on benign pitches.
"We have mandated manufacturers to come up with a ball that can last the entire 50 overs without getting invisible. Ideally, there should be one ball but right now we can't go back to that," ICC CEO Dave Richardson said.
Richardson further claimed that there has been varying feedback from current players, "It depends who you ask. Some spinners say the ball stays hard and it allows them to get more bounce and get-through off the pitch. Some would deny that.”
ICC has formulated an ODI league that would determine the qualification for the World Cup due to be held in 2023. "The bilateral series will be sorted by the ODI league - a 13-team tournament. That will create a lot of context. Besides qualification to World Cup, it will generate understandable interest. As far as ODI cricket is concerned, our research says it's still a very popular format," said Richardson.
(with inputs from timesofindia.indiatimes.com)