India to play only 6 ODIs before Champions Trophy | Crickit
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India to play only 6 ODIs before Champions Trophy

Jun 20, 2024 08:47 PM IST

With ODI bilateral cricket not as commercially viable as before, there will be plenty more of T20I action

The fixtures released by Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) for the upcoming home season give a measure of how bilateral cricket is struggling to strike a balance between commercial viability and preparedness for world events which are now an annual exercise.

India's captain Rohit Sharma during a practice session ahead of the Super 8 match against Afghanistan(Surjeet Yadav)
India's captain Rohit Sharma during a practice session ahead of the Super 8 match against Afghanistan(Surjeet Yadav)

India will be playing 16 T20Is (8 away and 8 at home) and only 6 ODIs after the end of the ongoing T20 World Cup and before next year’s ODI Champions Trophy, likely to begin on February 19. These are far from ideal preparations for an ODI marquee event. But the scheduling shows, how outside of world events, the 50-over format is fast losing currency in the congested calendar despite last year’s successful ODI World Cup in India.

The Indian team will be on the road in July-August to play 5 T20Is in Zimbabwe followed by 3 more T20Is and 3 ODIs in Sri Lanka. These will be the only ODIs India will play apart from 3 ODIs at home, next year against England (Feb 6-12) just before the Champions trophy.

The rest of the white-ball bilateral calendar will be all T20Is - 3 T20Is (Oct 6-12) against Bangladesh and 5 T20Is against England that will precede the ODI series. India is expected to trial a fresher crop of players for T20I matches.

“Bilateral T20Is still generate traction. It’s no longer the same for ODI cricket,” a BCCI insider said.

There have been consultations behind the scenes among various stakeholders if the Champions Trophy can be converted into the T20 format, but the ICC for now is committed to the ODI format.

“There’s also a view that if Champions Trophy’s format were to change, it would dilute the importance of the T20 World Cup,” an ICC official said. Further conversations are expected at next month’s ICC meeting.

5 TESTS AT HOME

India will be also playing 5 Test matches at home and 5 away. They will first be seen in action in a 2-Test series (starting Sept 23 and Oct 1 at Chennai and Kanpur) against Bangladesh. New Zealand will then come to India for 3 Tests, starting October 20, 28 and November 5 at Bengaluru, Pune and Mumbai.

India will also be going Down under for 5 Test matches in Australia between Nov 22- Jan 7. All matches will be part of the World Test Championships as India vie for finals qualification.

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