The Indian cricket board haggles with the top notch in world cricket order for the creme de la creme on revenues based on exact percentages they bring to the table.
It is time the International Cricket Council must, in the same spirit, realise that some appraisal forms on performance of its stakeholders, the teams on the field, are pretty much in order.
Or else, do away with the rankings and the Test-nation status, ICC. Nothing makes that the futility of the exercise more bare and apparent than the fiasco that is Bangladesh and their repeated flop shows. Agreed, it was a one-day international on Tuesday, when Bangladesh embarrassed themselves by failing to chase down a lowly 101 in 41 overs.
Their collapse has not been the first time, though. If they are a disgrace in ODIs, they certainly don’t deserve to be in the Tests – more boring to watch, but most competitive a format.
The ICC, read India, have tried to bite the bullet in the past by introducing a two-tier hierarchy for Test-playing nations. Each time, there has been some crucial decision lurking nearby where India needs the vote of teams like Bangladesh and the West Indies, and they get let off the hook in lieu.
Unlike the one-day internationals (ODIs), where teams such as Ireland and Afghanistan provide entertaining competition from outside the fringe, trying to get inside, the Test nations are a protected lot.
Either more teams need to be allowed in or Bangladesh needed to be punished with expulsion. Somewhere, somehow, they need to pay a price.
Update: Ironically, while Bangladesh stutter as the world order dithers over their right to stand among the elite, they have at least shown the way in cracking down on match-fixing.
By design or not, the call to ban Mohammad Ashfraful for eight years will still be more than the action, or rather inaction, taken by their counterparts in the Board of Control fro Cricket in India.
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