Strauss fears Test cricket will 'fizzle' away

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Former England captain Andrew Strauss is concerned that Test cricket could fade away in the next few years, as commercial interests trump the game in the Big Three countries that control the sport.

Former England captain Andrew Strauss is concerned that Test cricket could fade away in the next few years, as commercial interests trump the game in the Big Three countries that control the sport.

Strauss wrote in the updated version of his autobiography, 'Driving Ambition', that T20 cricket made more money, especially in India, and that the BCCI, the ECB and CA would soon be richer, while poor boards get poorer, and Tests 'fizzle' away.

He wrote: "India can argue that they bring the most money into the game, and thus deserve more out of the precious ICC broadcasting rights, but skewing the distribution of the three boards that are already the most financially secure can only create a situation in which the rich get richer and the poor poorer..

"With only 10 teams playing Test cricket and four of those already struggling to stay competitive, the risk of the game degenerating to the extent that the result of many Test series is a foregone conclusion is both high and real."

Strauss added: "I can't help feeling that we have already reached the tipping point as far as Test cricket is concerned.

"The teams will keep playing each other over the next eight years, but aside from iconic series like the Ashes or England v India, I fear that the game is slowly going to fizzle out as a mainstream attraction, especially away from the 'big three' nations."

He also commented on viewership numbers at the grounds this past English summer, saying: "Being at Headingley to watch the Test between England and Sri Lanka, and hearing that there was a bigger crowd at Lord's to watch MCC v Hertfordshire, tells a story itself.

"Watching a Test match between the West Indies and New Zealand in an empty stadium with no more than a handful of spectators in attendance sends out warning signals.

"Seeing that the viewing figures for a county Twenty20 game rival those for a Test match adds to the growing perception that Test cricket is in crisis."

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