Former India coach Ravi Shastri believes that franchise cricket is the way ahead in T20 cricket, with the IPL growing year after year and attracting a significant number of viewers for every match. Despite its demanding schedule, the Indian Premier League is a game-changer in every sense and is widely watched not only in India but throughout the world. India was late to adopt the shortest format of the game, but things changed swiftly once the IPL was introduced.
He believes that the T20 format is not designed for bilateral international series and that this form of cricket must be limited to the World Cup. When it comes to the shortest format, Shastri, one of India’s most successful coaches, believes that franchise cricket combined with a biannual T20 World Cup is the best path ahead, given the thirst for it among fans. Shastri reckoned- “There’s too much bilateral stuff going on in T20 cricket. I’ve said that [before], even when I was the coach of India, I could see it happening in front of my eyes. It should go the football way, where, in T20 cricket, you just play the World Cup. Bilateral tournaments – no one remembers. I don’t remember a single game in the last six-seven years as coach of India, barring the World Cup.”
Ravi Shastri coached the Indian team from July 2017 till the end of the ICC T20 World Cup 2021. The team achieved many laurels under his guidance, especially in the Test format as the Indian side stood strong as the No. 1 Test team in the rankings year after year. Adding to his thoughts on the T20 format, he further stated: “A team wins the World Cup, they will remember it. Unfortunately, we didn’t, so I don’t remember that either. Where I am coming from is: you play franchise cricket around the globe; each country is allowed to have their franchise cricket, which is their domestic cricket, and then, every two years, you come and play a World Cup.”