Yesterday, I sat through a friend's fifteen minute disquisition on comic-book trends, delivered as if I, too, regularly read the things. Though he later apologized, I genuinely enjoyed it; there's something interesting about sitting through someone else's abstruse technical discussions. It's a little window into a world that is normally totally invisible to your view.
Today, I enjoyed the same phenomenon reading another friend blog about cricket:
The best one may say for Twenty20 is that it may prove a gateway to an appreciation of real cricket for some fans; much more likely, however, is that it will further erode the viability of test match cricket which is already in trouble everywhere outside England and Australia.
This is not merely a question of money, but ones of technique, discipline and mental fortitude. One day cricket alters the way batsmen and bowlers approach the game. How many batsmen now have the patience, let alone the technique required, to bat all day on a difficult wicket? Precious few. How many bowlers, used to being smashed off a length in hit-and-run cricket, now possess the ability to stick to line and length? Precious few.
It may be silly to think there was once a golden age - Cardus after all mourned the pre-1914 game even as he was writing about Bradman and Hammond and Woolley and Headley and all the rest - but skills once considered integral to the game are disappearing and part of the blame for that must be apportioned to the proliferation of one-day cricket.
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