White-ball is the way of the future, says ICC independent chair Greg Barclay

Greg Barclay © ICC

Greg Barclay, the independent chair of the International Cricket Council (ICC), believes that Women’s Test cricket might not stand the test of time as countries do not have that structure in place domestically which could help it prosper in the future.

While talking to BBC Radio’s Test Match Special, Barclay said that the future of women’s cricket lies in white-ball cricket.

“If you look at the way cricket is going, there is no doubt that white-ball is the way of the future.

That is the game that is sought after by the fans, where the broadcasters are putting their resources, and what is driving the money. Therefore, the counties that are developing women’s cricket will focus on that.”

“In order to play Test cricket, you have to have the structures in place domestically, and they don’t really exist. So I can’t really see women’s Test or long-form cricket evolving at any speed at all.

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That’s not to say they can’t choose to play Test cricket, but I don’t really see that as part of the landscape moving forward to any real extent,” added Barclay.

Test cricket has become limited to only a certain set of countries in the recent past as just England, Australia and India have played the game’s most traditional format since 2017 and ICC is cognizant of the same.

The most recent Test series (The Ashes) in January between hosts Australia and England turned out to be a thriller as it went right down to the wire and culminated in a last-ball draw. The game saw many people calling for more frequent Test matches.

Barclay was also asked to shed light upon the prevailing situation in Afghanistan cricket and more importantly on women’s cricket in the country.

“The people involved in Afghan cricket assure me they are doing everything they can to get the women’s game better established, and what has happened is hopefully something of a blip in that process.

Some other members have also had slow progress in developing a women’s game, so let’s give it time,” he said.