In its second season now, the Indian Premier League (IPL) introduced a money-making plan by tacking on a 7.5 minute intra-innings break for both the innings of a match, ostensibly for extra analysis. Great players like Tendulkar have suggested that it breaks the players’ concentration.
In the beginning, I tended to agree with him, but I have since changed my mind. I now believe that great players must adapt to the game.
That said, I have not really seen any takeaways for the viewing public (and those following online) that result from the 7.5 minute break. So, drumrolls please, here is my innovative (hopefully) suggestion:
– extend the break from 7.5 minutes to 10 minutes
– give both teams the opportunity to make one change apiece in their teams (that would be two changes for the duration of the game)
– change must be made immediately after the break starts, so everyone has 10 real-time minutes to discuss the changes and the impact on the game
– change must not imbalance the team’s foreign/Indian player ratios (in the sense that seven players – or more – must be Indian players, before/after the change)
– if a bowler is removed from the lineup, the replacement can bowl only the remainder of his quota
– if a batsman is replaced after he starts batting, the replacement cannot bat (if the replaced batsman was batting at the 10 over mark, he will be asterisked “retired out”)
Note to Mr. Vijay Mallya: If his test team (in the guise of a Twenty20 outfit) reaches a score of 150, they should automatically be declared winners of the game. I leave you with an apposite quote from Bonnie “guess who I am” Blair that I got in an Internet forward this very morning: “Winning doesn’t always mean finishing first; winning means you are doing better than you’ve done before.”
PS: The way teams are playing, one would think that the Fake IPL Player belongs to Deccan. That is the one team that has been surpassing all expectations this season, as though every player is afraid that he’s the next one to be axed (like Aakash Chopra and Sanjay Bangar were for Kolkota).