The EPL (English Premier League), which has been proposed by the ECB recently, is set to include the 18 first-class counties and two international teams (most probably, one team from the IPL and the other, the Standford All Stars XI, or something like that).
Seriously, people were complaining about Lalit Modi and his honchos exploiting T20 to its fullest, now what do people have to say about the EPL? 20 teams itself is just 10 too-many. How the fixtures will be played out is unclear, but, from a rough calculation, since its being divided into 2 groups of 10, it should come to about 90 group matches (considering the teams play each other only once, if not, it’ll be 180)! I can’t think of any other way they’re going to play the matches, since they only have 2 groups, and 90 matches is just 50 too-many! However, if I remember correct, the ECB mentioned that they’d play only on Fridays, so they must be having something else in mind.
Besides, its going to obviously be played during a time when players from at least 2 countries won’t be available, and the fact that there’s a cap on the number of foreing players means that we may not see the best players in all the counties (unlike the IPL).
Moreover, the BCCI’s utterly childish stance on teams which recruit players linked with the ICL (they’ve “advised” players not to play with such teams) would mean that the Indians would only be able to play in the 3 ‘clean’ counties (I’m not sure about the name of the counties, if anyone does know, please post it in the comments section), which obviously gives them a limited chance.
This is in addition to the “traditional” T20 Cup, which will still be played. After all the accusations about the BCCI trying to kill test cricket, it is the “inventor” of the game of cricket whose trying to ruin test – cricket by giving an overdose of T20 matches!
Haven’t anyone realised why England rarely put in world – beating performances? Its precisely because they have 18 counties! If someone tries out for a first XI place in Durham, and finds it hard to get in, he goes to Glamorgan, where they’ll be more than glad to give him a spot. He doesn’t earn his place the proper way (unlike in the Australian Domestic scene, where they only have 6 teams, and so competition for places is intense), and puts up some half – decent performances against some equally dismal counties (like Glamorgan, Somerset, Gloucestershire, etc) and gets picked for the national side! Because of the relative ease with which they get selected, they never really put in some proper effort to improve their cricket!
The original idea, proposed by the MCC, Middlesex and Lancashire to have 9 teams was MUCH MUCH better, but sadly, in the pursuit of money, the ECB rejected this idea, little realising that they themselves (with that money – freak Giles Clarke) are killing test cricket!