If we do not alter, we will get left behind, stated Adam Zampa when asked about the new rules that will be executed for the 10th edition of the Big Bash League. The decision comes on the back of shrinking TV ratings and crowds for the BBL in the last couple of years.
There are three new rules. First, a team will be awarded a bonus point for leading at the 10-over mark of an innings. Second, a player can be substituted into a match at the midway point of the first innings. Third, the mandatory powerplay has been contracted from six to four overs with the batting side to decide when the second powerplay, called a power surge, is taken after the 11th over.
There have been differing reactions from the current and past players. Shane Watson and Usman Khawaja believe it is absurd while players such as Zampa and Marcus Stoinis believe it is something the game needs. Which begs the question, does the T20 format need a renovation?
The success of the IPL in the last 13 years sounds to advise, No. The IPL is a large part of T20 cricket, but there are so many other global leagues such as the BBL that are never going upto the standards or quality of the IPL or quality, hence they need alterations.
People try to compare the Big Bash to the IPL but we just do not have the depth of talent that India has. So I think to try with the check, a little bit of change and a little bit of alteration is really good for us, stated Zampa.
Each T20 league has its own dedicated market and it is absolutely right to twist some rules to ensure the game is still a viable product for its largest audience. BBL’s essential objective is to serve the Australian audience. While Cricket Australia would love to attract a global audience, all the strategies are based upon tempting the local public.
From all the feedback and all the opinions gathered at the CA headquarters in Melbourne, it was vital that the game needed some form of innovation to ensure it still captured the audiences. On a bigger scale, the BBL is not competing against other T20 leagues in the world, it is striving with the other sports within Australia.
The dedicated window in December and January has meant the BBL does not have strong competition from any other sport, but the declining broadcasting numbers in the past two years are a sign that interest is shrinking. At the end of the day, the BBL is the golden chunk of Australian cricket and it holds the key for broadcasting rewards.
CA has been guilty of providing consignment over calibre. The fact that Australia’s gentry cricketers have rarely played in the BBL has started to exasperate viewers. David Warner, Mitchell Starc, Pat Cummins have not played in BBL since 2014 and 2015. Josh Hazlewood played a couple of matches last year to show his fitness, other than that he has not played since 2014.
Glenn Maxwell and Marcus Stoinis likewise players play the full season once in a while as it tends to clash with the international white-ball matches in January. Taking all these factors into attention, the pattern is bound to dwindle. In spite of these trends, CA extended the games from 42 to 56 matches. It only made the game more robotic and even dismal at times.
To cure all these issues, CA recruited T20 expert Trent Woodhill to rejuvenate the format. Woodhill has coached in most of the T20 leagues around the globe and the new rules this season is his magnum opus. CA, along with Woodhill, has done a lot of research into data and statistics before coming up with the rules changes. But a lot of this data has been based on BBL and not T20 cricket worldwide.
Ten years earlier, the 50-over format was ruling, but new rules had to be brought into place to make sure it still kept the audience keen. It is the same with T20 cricket, but the difference is that the targeted audience varies with different leagues. In fact, it is great for the game that new rules can be tested in different leagues and perhaps the ones with best results can then be executed into the big leagues such as the IPL or even the ICC tournaments.
Big Bash needs the rejuvenation and perhaps it is a great example that will only ensure that T20 cricket remains an applicable product across the world.
These innovations are made to attract more audience and keep them engaged with cricket in Australia. BBL is second largest and popular domestic league after IPL but in terms of revenues and crowd engagement BBL is way behind. CA is trying all these models to make BBL of the standards of the IPL. Let’s see what effects these changes bring in this upcoming season. Till then keep visiting our website for more updates about BBL and free bbl betting tips.