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If I was New Zealand I wouldn’t even play: Steve Waugh

By Rohit - January 06, 2024 05:15 PM

Former Australia captain Steve Waugh said that South Africa naming 7 uncapped players in their 14-man squad to face New Zealand in a two-Test series in February was ‘disrespectful’ to the Kiwis and urged the ICC to look into the matter instead of ignoring it.

The popularity of the Indian Premier League (IPL) and other domestic cricket tournaments of the world showcases the transformation in cricket. Once cherished for its Test format, the post-modern world seems too busy to appreciate the longest format of the game. After the announcement of South Africa's Test squad for the New Zealand tour, former Australia captain Steve Waugh couldn't stop himself from raising concerns over the future of Test cricket and even called it a “defining moment in the death of Test cricket".

The top players of South Africa will remain engaged in the second season of SA20, Cricket South Africa's domestic tournament, and then IPL 2024. The domestic tournaments don't allow the players to be available for the Test format of the game.

"Is this a defining moment in the death of test cricket? Surely the ICC along with the cricket boards of India, England, and Australia must step in to protect the purest form of the game. A premium, equal match fee for all test players might be a good starting point. History and tradition must count for something. If we stand by and allow profits to be the defining criteria the legacy of Bradman, Grace, and Sobers will be irrelevant," Steve Waugh said on Instagram.

With neither Pakistan nor the West Indies sending their full-strength teams to Australia for the Test series, Waugh fears the trend will continue.

"It's pretty obvious what the problem is. The West Indies aren't sending their full-strength side (to Australia this summer). They haven't picked a full-strength Test team for a couple of years now.

"Someone like Nicholas Pooran is a Test batsman who doesn't play Test cricket. Jason Holder, probably their best player, is not playing now. Even Pakistan didn't send a full side (to Australia)," he added.

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