Ravichandran Ashwin has said that he has found the ECB’s ‘The Hundred’ an enjoyable tournament and requested people to give it a chance before drawing conclusions. Ashwin reckoned that the competition is a boon to Women’s cricket, and further hoped for the Women’s IPL to take place some day.
England and Wales Cricket Board’s (ECB) brainchild ‘The Hundred’ has not even been a week old and many experts and fans are already divided over the latest format of the game, with India’s legendary player Sunil Gavaskar calling the tournament ‘insipid’ and ‘ordinary’.
However, contrary to Gavaskar’s opinion, Indian off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin holds a different vision, with the 34-year-old finding the competition enjoyable. The veteran is of the opinion that, in most cases, innovation is misunderstood by the masses.
“Hundred format has had an exciting start, and let’s see how it goes. Many believe this format can affect the performances of players. But I have found The Hundred enjoyable, and it can be called a sporting festival season. After tough times, experiencing live sports in cricket is something great,” Ashwin said on his YouTube channel.
“Those who did not understand this format commented vaguely about frequent changes in rules and formats. To many, innovation is not encouraged and is often misunderstood,” he added.
The Hundred is an eight-team competition in which there have been amendments to the norms of conventional cricket. The funky changes, such as ‘overs’ being scrapped in favor of ‘balls’ and a changeover happening once every 10 balls, have not been welcomed by everyone, with select groups finding the modifications to be too gimmicky. Ashwin, however, is of the opinion that far too many comments have been made by people without them checking out the actual product.
“When someone films a movie, we should watch it in the theatre and then criticise it. Making irrelevant comments even before going to the theatre does not work. We should appreciate the attempt and give credit to it,” Ashwin said.
ECB is conducting The Women’s Hundred on parallel lines with the Men’s competition where Indian players like Jemimah Rodrigues and Smriti Mandhana have starred for their respective franchises. The South African duo of Dane van Niekerk and Marizanne Kapp starred for Oval Invincibles Women in the opening game against Manchester Originals Women after they helped the side chase 136 through a 73-run stand. Ashwin termed the game ‘oustanding’ and asserted that ‘Women’s cricket is here to stay.’
“I watched a women’s game between Oval Invincibles and Manchester Originals. Though names were different, the game was outstanding, and women’s cricket is here to stay. I’d be glad if women’s IPL is all set to happen,” Ashwin said.