Sydney: Australian cricket captain Michael Clarke has pitched for the game`s powerbrokers to ensure the future of traditional Test matches, despite the billion-dollar Twenty20 revolution now swamping cricket.
The Australian captain says the encouragement of Test players must be the main aim of administrators.
"Governing bodies must prioritise player performance and payment in Test cricket," Clarke told a daily.
This is in stark contrast to what has happened in Australia recently, with state contracts slashed to finance the expansion of the new eight-team Twenty20 Big Bash.
And players not considered good enough for Test cricket can now earn enormous amounts of money in the Indian premier League (IPL).
"The future of Test cricket relies on the investment in continuing to make it the pinnacle of the sport," Clarke said, adding: "It is the toughest form of the game.”
"It requires all the skills of the other two forms of the game, but over five days. The physical and mental intensity of a five-day Test makes Test cricket far and away the pinnacle of the game. It is fitting that two powerhouses of cricket are playing at Lord`s for the 2000th Test," he said further.