In the 21st century thus far, we have seen the likes of T20 cricket successfully developing globally. With T20 leagues mushrooming all over the World, the modern cricketer has a loving relationship with this form of the game. In the summer of 2020, Cricket’s latest form of the game is set to be launched. It’s called The Hundred and is set to debut in the motherland of Cricket, good ole England. The Hundred will be 100 balls per innings. The league will comprise of eight city based franchise teams and will field both a men’s and women’s team. Eight new teams have been formulated as follows:
- Manchester Originals (Old Trafford, Manchester)
- Northern Superchargers (Headingley, Leeds)
- Birmingham Phoenix (Edgbaston, Birmingham)
- Trent Rockets (Trent Bridge, Nottingham)
- Welsh Fire (Sophia Gardens, Cardiff)
- London Spirit (Lord’s, London)
- Oval Invincibles (The Oval, London)
- Southern Brave (Hampshire Bowl, Southampton)
The Hundred will attract brand new audiences all around the World and it will be more appealing to everyone involved.
This tournament is planned to take place in 2020 by The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB). The format of this unique version of Cricket is quite unusual. Every die-hard Cricket fan knows an over comprises of 6 balls. That’s all about to change in The Hundred. Bowlers can deliver either 5 or 10 consecutive balls in an over. Each bowler is permitted to deliver a maximum of 20 balls per game and a 25-ball power play is designed at the beginning for each team. A strategic timeout of up to two and a half minutes is also part of the parcel. In the power play, two fielders are allowed outside the standard 30-yard inner ring.
In the modern era of sport, this is a new breath of fresh air for the glorious game of Cricket. The Gentleman’s game that we know and love growing up is evolving over time. One will agree that Test Cricket is the pinnacle of the game but as time went by from the 1970s onwards, Cricket welcomed One Day Internationals. Few were skeptical about the shorter format but it proved that Cricket had the space to welcome it. In 2020, it will be welcomed by both hardcore Cricket lovers as well as the ones who don’t really follow the game for whatever reason. The Hundred will attract brand new audiences all around the World and it will be more appealing to everyone involved.
Imagine the T20 superstars participating in such a tournament. The likes of Dwayne Bravo, Kieron Pollard, Chris Gayle the Universe Boss, Ben Stokes, Jofra Archer, David Warner and the list goes on. The public going to these matches all over the UK next summer will definitely get their money’s worth. Such a strategic game will require a combination of the old and young Cricketers, as well as a good-thinking captain. Cricket’s modern heroes such as Joe Root and Eoin Morgan welcomed the new format, but of course there will always be an eye-brow or two raised about dwindling with the game.
India’s sensational captain and World-class batsman Virat Kohli spoke about the commercialization of Cricket and did not take a liking to this particular version. Everyone is entitled to their opinion and Virat’s opinion will be highly respected. This tournament is 9 months away so a lot of planning will be in place to ensure the success of it. Just like any other format, common sense batting is always required.
The key to success is not just hitting fours and sixes but also rotating the strike to ensure a batsman is not dominated by a particular bowler. Especially due to the fact that there will be a 10 ball over bowled by the best bowler on the day. Or one would like to think a captain will put his best or most effective bowler on to bowl the 10-ball over. With the UK launching this new format, time will tell if The Hundred balls per innings will be developed in the other Cricketing countries. As for now, Cricket welcomes its newest form of the game coming up in 2010…………The Hundred.