ICC mulls over initiating mandatory four-day Tests

four-day Test

Cricket’s governing body, International Cricket Council (ICC) is exploring possibilities of making four-day Test matches mandatory. Although five-day Tests have been the norm for years, there have been trials of the other variant. South Africa-Zimbabwe and England-Ireland played four-day Test matches after taking permission from ICC. However, many cricketers have objected to shortening cricket’s holiest format.

Also read: Flashback 2019: 5 gripping matches which made our hearts skip a beat

ICC’s cricket committee is likely to formally consider making four-day Tests mandatory from the new cycle of World Test Championship which begins in 2023. The increasing demand for event windows is one of the significant reasons behind this move. With the rise of domestic leagues around the globe, there have been concerns regarding the workload on cricketers.

Shrinking Test matches to four days will also result in cutting down time and gain a greater share of the revenue without taking the fifth day into account. With more time available, the number of matches and series can go up. In recent years, matches lasting till the fifth day have been rare.

The number of overs in a day will also shoot up from 90 to 98 if we curtail a day’s play. The over rate is an issue which the ICC is yet to resolve. The weather conditions will also be a major hurdle in completing the day’s quota.

Many cricketers have spoken against this move. Australia’s Tim Paine, Nathan Lyon and Justin Langer have expressed their concerns and have shot the idea down. However, Cricket Australia and England Cricket Board have sided with ICC on this matter.