'Test players must provide excitement'

2016-10-04 15:50
Virat Kohli (AP)

Kolkata - India must play exciting Test cricket to entertain the crowds, skipper Virat Kohli said after defeating New Zealand, amid waning interest in the game's longest form.

India regained the top spot in the world rankings in tests and sealed the three-match series against New Zealand with a comprehensive 178-run victory in Kolkata on Monday.

The series against the Black Caps marks the start of a packed programme of international cricket for India who also host England, Bangladesh and Australia later this season.

Kohli said players needed to interact with the crowd during Tests, in a similar fashion to the high-energy, limited-overs games.

"You saw how engaged the crowd was, they like to see exciting cricket, and we have to provide it," Kohli said after winning the second match in Kolkata to take an unassailable 2-0 lead in the series.

"You have to interact with them, you have to make sure they are a part of the whole thing. You feed off their energy. It happens so much in limited overs, so why not in test cricket?"

The comments come as Test cricket struggles to find an audience in the Twenty20 era, prompting last year's introduction of day-night tests played under lights with a pink ball in Australia.

Former cricket greats including Shane Warne and some cricket board chiefs have also flagged slashing the format from five to four days.

But controversial plans to create a two-tier Test system have been scrapped by cricket's world governing body after India's powerful board led a backlash.

Kohli's comments came as the third test between India and New Zealand was thrown into doubt on Tuesday, with a row raging between the Indian board and a Supreme Court-appointed panel charged with its reform.

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) said it was unclear if the match would go ahead on Saturday after it said the panel had ordered banks to block payments to its state associations.

"This is a very unfortunate situation for the BCCI," BCCI president Anurag Thakur told reporters.

"State unions will need to decide on this matter – whether they will host matches or not, in what condition they will host, with or without money."

But former chief justice Rajendra Lodha, who heads the panel, said banks had been directed to halt "large" payments not "routine" ones, meaning matches could still go ahead.

"There is absolutely no prohibition," Lodha told local media.

The panel issued the order following weeks of frustration over the BCCI's decision to ignore several of its reforms that were recommended following corruption scandals last year.

Read more on:    india  |  virat kohli  |  cricket

What To Read Next


Read News24’s Comments Policy

Live Video Streaming
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

Love 2 Meet
Sport24 on Twitter

Follow Sport24 news on Twitter


With the Absa Premiership in full swing, who will be crowned champions when all is said and done? Will Mamelodi Sundowns defend their title? Or can Kaizer Chiefs, Orlando Pirates or Bidvest Wits mount a serious challenge? Stay glued to Sport24 to find out!

Latest blogs

Under fire Proteas coach Russell Domingo has blamed player workloads and fatigue as the reason for the national team's woeful showing in the Tri Series in the Caribbean. Your thoughts?

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.