Test cricket is the flagship of world cricket: Ian Botham

Sydney: Former England captain and all-rounder Ian Botham has described Test cricket as the flagship of world cricket today and refuses to accept that the longer format of the game is dying out.

“There must be a better balance and the big clashes in world cricket should have full Tests series and not the two-Test series we see that is happening far too often. There is also too much T20 cricket being played. All the best players come from Test cricket and T20 cricket is not really the way cricket should be played. It is just entertainment, a fun thing and the icing on the cake for cricket,” a leading daily quoted Botham, as saying.

Commenting on bowlers breaking down more often than in the past, Botham said: “The bowlers of today have not got the balance right on how they prepare to play international cricket. I have said it for years, that there is too much gym and not enough net practice. Bowlers need to bowl lots of overs in the nets. Look at D. K. Lillee. Sure he did lots of gym, but worked twice as hard in the nets.”

Giving his assessment of the spot fixing issue bedeviling Pakistan, he said: “Pakistan needs to sort out its backyard ASAP. If it can`t do that, then they should be suspended from playing international cricket until they do. Regarding the three players who got jail sentences, I believe they got off lightly.”


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