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ODIs are ‘just a drag now,’ the format is ‘kind of dying’: Wasim Akram

The former Pakistan fast-bowler's comments came in the wake of Ben Stokes' retirement from the 50-over format.

The former left-arm fast bowler said that even as a commentator, he feels the ODI format is dying. (File)

Former Pakistan fast bowler Wasim Akram believes that three formats of international cricket is “unsustainable” and that 50-over one-dayers might have to be scrapped as they no longer draw crowds to stadiums around the world.

England all-rounder Ben Stokes announced his retirement from ODIs this week after deciding to focus on test cricket and the game’s shortest format, Twenty20.

Akram, a devastating bowler in his prime and the first to claim 500 ODI wickets, said Stokes retiring from ODIs was sad but that he understood the reasons.

“Even as a commentator… one-day cricket is just a drag now, especially after T20. I can imagine as a player. 50 overs, 50 overs, then you have to pre-game, post-game, the lunch game,” Akram said on a BBC podcast.

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“T20 is kind of easier, (in) four hours the game is over. The leagues all around the world, there’s a lot more money. I suppose this is part and parcel of modern cricket — T20 or test cricket. One-day cricket is kind of dying.

“It is quite tiring for a player to play one-day cricket… So players are focusing on the shorter format and the longer format obviously (with) test cricket.”

When asked if administrators should focus on tests and T20s Akram said: “I think so. In England, you have full houses. In India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, South Africa — (with) one-day cricket you are not going to fill the stadiums. They are doing it just for the sake of doing it,” he added.

First published on: 23-07-2022 at 05:47:02 pm
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