Twenty20: Will the excitement last?

India are the world champions in the Twenty20 version of the game. And yet, when they play Australia on Saturday, it is the Indians feeling the heat.

updated: October 22, 2007 18:17 IST
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New Delhi:

India were the last to make their Twenty20 International debut. They had a winning start against South Africa a year ago.

Since then they have gone on and won the inaugural T20 World Cup but surprisingly India are yet to play a bi-lateral series in this latest version of international cricket.

And that's because the T20 world Cup was played not long after it became an official form of International cricket, just 19 International games were played before the World Cup.

The one day game too saw just 18 International matches before a World Cup was organised and played.

The big question though is where will this new version of the game fit in? In 2007 a total of 14 Twenty20 Internationals were played.

England played the maximum with three but it seems a tough task to crack the already packed international calendar.

"I guess the hardest thing is fitting it in. The international program is pretty full already. So what is it four at home and three away or vice-versa something like that you can play each year. It probably is enough," said Ricky Ponting, Captain, Australian Cricket team.

"I would not lie to see it take over too much from one day cricket. I think it will find its place in World Cricket. And like I said everyone enjoyed the last World Cup and they will continue to enjoy because it is a fun game," he added.

Fun game indeed, crowds at the recent Twenty20 World Cup in South Africa were treated to some of the best cricket that they could have asked for.

But many fear that an excess of Twenty20 cricket could just make it difficult for players to make the shift from playing the quick paced Twenty20 to the technique driven Test Cricket.

"At Twenty20 it's sheer talent, it's what you saw in the Pakistan and Indian teams. We have a lot of talent. But to win Test matches we also need technique and temperament which the Australian's have better than us," said Imran Khan, Former Pakistan Captain.

So where does that leave T20, and how much is too much?

For now the ICC has stipulated that Test playing nations should play no more than seven matches in a year and no more than two matches per series ruling out it seems for the time being a multi-event Twenty20 series.