Can the World Test Championship save Test cricket?
It is a well-known fact that white-ball cricket is taking the sport to many different areas of the world, but at the same time, Test cricket is losing its glory. The purest form of the game is facing tough times in terms of viewership and fanbase. Empty chairs in stadiums have become a common sight at Test matches. People's lives have become fast-paced, as a result of which Test cricket has been incapable of fulfilling their expectations.
In recent times, Test cricket has lost the charm it once had. As the match conditions favor the home side excessively, most of the Test matches are dominated throughout by one team, owing to which most matches are bereft of thrill.
Matches sometimes last for as little as three days or two and a half days with one side being dominant over the other team. Test cricket needs something iconic to bring it back to life and re-establish its glory among the fans. That something could be the World Test Championship.
Every individual Test series will have a total of 120 points up for grabs irrespective of the length of the series. The 120 points will be equally distributed for every match of the series. Both the teams would receive one-third of the total points in case of a drawn match.
According to this point system, each match of The Ashes will have a weightage of 24 points for the winner, and in total, the five matches will award a total of 120 points. The Championship begins with the first Ashes 2019 Test on 1st August at Edgbaston.
By the end of the league stage, the top two teams in the points table will play for the championship at the iconic Lords Cricket Stadium in June 2021.
The ultimate prize of being labeled as the 'World Test champions' is certain to attract the fans back to the stadiums to support their favorite team. Test matches will yet again bring about the same excitement and euphoria attached to the format like any World Cup game.
During the last few matches of the league stage, the points table will get tight and competitive. In such situations, one can witness fans of a different cricketing nations vouching for a different team to win, in order to ensure the qualification of their favorite team.
This, in turn will undeniably bring about a lot of permutations and combinations, as fans of the longest format of the game will have a lot more to look forward to, shining more light on the format that seems to be sliding into the shadows.