Former Australian Test captain Tim Paine has delivered a warning to T20 cricket, and believes there needs to be less focus on ‘meaningless’ international fixtures in the future.
After the Aussies were bundled out of the T20 World Cup, there has been plenty of talk surrounding the future of the game not just Down Under, but overseas as well.
Australia won the T20WC last year, but 12 months later they have lost their title, with the ICC opting for back-to-back tournaments in the shortest format of the game.
There were also plenty of warm-up matches in both Australia and abroad in the lead-up to the World Cup, with the series against England failing to draw large crowds and struggling in TV ratings.
MORE: The major issue with Australia’s T20WC exit
Speaking on SEN Sportsday, Paine urged the game’s decision-makers to make T20 cricket focused more on franchise competitions, with World Cups to be held every four years.
“I’ve got some views on T20 cricket,” he said.
“I’d like to see it just franchised all around the world and then you just play World Cups every four years.
“I think we play too much meaningless T20 cricket and we’ve seen this year even in the warm-up games and some other series, no one wants to watch it.
“You’re getting small crowds to big venues and it just looks bad and then you get to the Big Bash and everyone has seen enough T20 so that’s waning as well.
“Get your star players playing in those franchises and their local leagues, then pick your best teams, have a World Cup and let Test cricket be the centrepiece around it.”
Paine – who hasn’t played for Australia since stepping away from the game last year – is now plying his trade with Tasmania in the Sheffield Shield competition.
And despite his chances of a recall to the Test arena being extremely slim, Paine believes the red-ball game should still remain the main focus, followed closely by domestic T20 competitions.
“I’m hopeful that Test cricket will continue to thrive,” he said.
“I know the players – certainly the ones that get to that level – love it and realise how important it is for the game.
“People want to watch the best players in the country playing in their domestic tournaments and I think if we took a huge chunk of T20 international cricket out, it opens up time in the calendar.
“We don’t see David Warner or Pat Cummins for the Sydney Thunder, or Josh Hazlewood and Mitchell Starc for the Sydney Sixers…that’s what kids and cricket-watchers want to watch.”