New Delhi: Former Australia skipper Steve Waugh on Tuesday said he wants the world's leading cricketers to promote Test cricket first rather than the Twenty20 format of the game. Waugh believes the popularity of T20 and the financial windfall for players that comes with it is affecting the longest format of the game.
“We have to hope senior cricketers in each country keep promoting Test cricket,” Waugh was quoted as saying by cricket.com.au on Tuesday. “Australian players still always talk about the Baggy Green cap and playing for their country and the responsibility rests with senior players in every country (to do the same.)”
The World Cup winning skipper also used the decline of West Indies as an example of how prioritising T20s can have a negative effect on Test matches. What concerns Waugh is the fact that the West Indies are current World T20 champions but in Tests they are struggling to fight it out against top quality sides.
Waugh also said kids who grow up watching the likes of Chris Gayle and Dwayne Bravo endorsing T20 will obviously take to the format.
“There is a danger there because obviously the Windies are fantastic at T20 and young kids see that. They see they can make a lot of money,” he said. “The West Indies got into a bit of trouble when Chris Gayle, who was a great Test player, said his priority was T20, then other senior players say the same thing, young kids hear it and all of a sudden the focus is on T20.”