Monday, 9 December 2013

Time to bring back ICC Knockout

In 1998 ICC came out with a brilliant tournament. It was to be hosted in a upcoming cricket country, give chance to few ODI nations to play in that and in a high octane knock out format, where is you miss the opposition hits. The tournament got a brilliant response from the first tournament in Bangladesh. The second tournament was even more exciting and the Indians defeating the favorites Australia and South Africa lost to Kiwis in the finals. However from 2002 ICC went for a change of format and removed the knock out format with a league system though small in size greatly increasing the number of matches.

Over time the pressure of time forced the tournament to be cut to just 8 teams making it a pointless tournament killing the purpose it was created for. This year in a complete change of tournament structuring, ICC Champions Trophy has been struck off now replacing it with the required ICC Test Championship. They also reduced the World T20 from 2 to 1 in 4 years. This now leads ICC to 3 tournaments in 4 years leaving 1 slot free.

How the proposed ICC format will look using the present ODI rankings. A short and interesting tournament
Cricket really needs to get aggressive and spread it to new markets. ICC Knockout is one of the exact tournament which is one size suits all though in small doses. Being a short tournament it can be easily fit in the FTP, it can be easily hosted in upcoming countries and the upcoming countries can get a chance to compete against Test Teams outside the World Cup and finally the format will keep everybody interested in the tournament. Even if the major teams loses early the tournament is short enough for ICC not to worry it will be dragged on.

Since 2007 ICC based on performance gives ODI status to 6 Associate teams. ICC Knockout gives us a good chance to make it a 16 team tournament with 10 Test Nations and 6 ODI Status Nations. To help spread the game ICC should host it in a upcoming country. It will help to take the game to non traditional markets.

The ICC is also going for reduction of World Cup from 2019 reducing it 10 nations. This leaves with a real possibility of Associate member left high and dry from ODI form of game and reduced to just playing T20 against full members. This is very counterproductive and hence becomes even more important for ICC to reintroduce the tournament.

I hope some good sense prevails in the ICC and we see it reintroduced it from 2018.


  1. actually 12Team format was good. Where Associate use to get to play 2 games atleast.
    If they have problem with schedule then they can host 2games a day Group A game1 and group b game1 in one day then group C game 1 and Group D game 1 same day and so on..