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Champions League T20 - A review


The End

With another Australian Champion at the helm, the Champions League T20 2012 has come to an end. No matter where we go, things tend to remain constant. One can associate Australia or a side that represents Australia at any tournament to come up with thumping performances at the crucial games. And most of the times, they live up to that billing. On the other hand, South African sides post their resumption have been the ones that proudly get labelled as the most consistent sides of the tournament. They always are the most organised, most well thought about and also the most fearsome sides that compete in the tournament. Well, at Champions League T20 2012 every bit of it turned true. Yes, once again. In other words, SydneySixers from Australia thumped the Lions from South Africa. Hence, the status quo was maintained; happily or sadly depends on which side of the argument you belong.

How it got going… certainly not like a tracer bullet

No no, Ravi Shastri was there in South Africa to commentate at CLT20, but things never really went like his favourite catchphrase for Indian Premier League teams. Although Delhi Daredevils reached the semi-final, their batsmen (especially the ones that belong to Indian nationality) failed to click as a unit. Yes, another clichéd Ravism but the truth nonetheless. For Chennai Super Kings, the loss in the first game, a wash-out in the other and then the mathematical calculations meant that the winning last two games at the league stage could not help them. For Kolkata Knight Riders, CLT20 2012 was anything but a good ride. They tumbled at every step. They did have the star power but they looked under-prepared and out performed on many counts excluding their performance in the last game against Titans. If these three were disappointing, then Mumbai Indians’ performance was threatening for their own good. They came into this tournament as ex-Champions. However, they played like also-rans. A sporadic performance, but they never really looked like they have arrived to compete and defend their title.

One nation one team policy

There is a huge debate about the ever so changing structure of the tournament where BCCI continue to add one more team every year. This time around, it meant that the teams from Sri Lanka, Pakistan, West Indies, England and New Zealand had to fight it out to grab the available two spots as the remaining 8 were already taken by 4 teams from IPL, 2 from Big Bash and 2 from MiWay T20 Challenge. In other words, there were 4 Indian teams, 2 Australian teams, 2 South African teams who got the direct entry and remaining 2 spots were left open for grabs. This is unfortunate, as it not only eliminates the chances of the teams from at least 3 nations but also makes the tournament more shareholderfriendly. Whatever it is, through this process Auckland and Yorkshire made it through to the final X of CLT20 2012.

What to expect from CLT20

There are various expectations everyone concerned with CLT20 has from the tournament. Fans want to see a more competitive and interest generating tournament. Administrators of CLT20 like every other domestic T20 league want to have a separate window. And sponsors need profits and revenues that will increase their credibility and help them earn visibility amongst the buyers and administrators of the game. And when it is clear that all the three mentioned above tend to go hand in hand, there is a serious need to restructure the CLT20 to meet the expectations of all three to a greater extent than before. Mind you, the administrators need not always compromise on the quality of cricket to make it a more money centric venture. And at the same time, fans need to let administrators know what they want. For one, it is the process where fans, administrators and sponsors need to work together. A more competitive, timely and more balanced (in structure) CLT20 will do more good than harm.

Well, you may feel I am thinking too much about a tournament like this. But if CLT20 is here to stay, then why not think about it with a lot more sincerity and compassion. If we want to have it, then let’s play our part to make it quality heavy. Eventually, it will be successful.

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