'They Don’t Care’,Steve Wagh Slams Cricket Bosses | Beginning of The End of Test Cricket

‘They Don’t Care’,Steve Wagh Slams Cricket Bosses | Beginning of The End of Test Cricket

Steve Wagh, the Australian legend has blasted the South African Cricket Board and ICC for allowing South African cricket board to prioritise SA’s T20 League over Test Cricket. Are we seeing the beginning of the end of Test Cricket?

Presented By: Raghunath Nair

Cricket has evolved over the years and now with the new T20 format, the world of cricket will see a clear shift from the traditional form of cricket to the new age fast paced 20 over format.

The South African (SA) Cricket Board is modelling their T20 franchise league similar to the Indian Premier League (IPL). Some of the SA Franchise team also are owned by Indian Premier League franchisers.

Thanks to the T20 format, Cricket is now moving from Bilateral International tournaments to franchise run tournament allowing players from multiple countries to play together in the fast-paced T20 format.

South African cricket board is in desperate need to improve their financial might in cricket and see the SA20 League as a potential money spinner for the Board.


Countries who have struggled with their finances in the past, have witnessed a drastic improvement with leagues like Pakistan Super League for Pakistan and Bangladesh Premier League for Bangladesh.

Even with their rich history in the game South African cricket doesnot have a rich board yet like the BCCI.

In fact, surprisingly, South African cricket board comes below the Pakistan Cricket Board and the Bangladesh Cricket board in financial might.

Many international players either avoid taking a central contract from their respective board or take an early retirement from International Cricket to enable them to play franchise cricket in all parts of the globe.

The average earning life of a cricketer in international cricket is short and the earnings are peanuts compared to the one they earn in the Various rich franchise league. Even New Zealand players like Trent Boult have opted out to play cricket for New Zealand in Bilateral Internationals. He too has rejected the central contract of the board.

Trent boult


West Indies are still a T20 powerhouse but in Test Cricket they are very poor, proving where their priorities lie.

The Central Contract of the national boards restricts their players to play other franchise leagues if it clashes with an international commitment. Central contracted players require to furnish NOC from their respective boards to play league tournaments.



The South African league is to begin shortly and may clash with the upcoming South African Test Series against New Zealand.

SA20 2023 Champions

Now in an ideal scenario, the contracted players are told to give priority to the internationals and give franchise cricket a miss if they clash. But here, the dilemma is this is the SA20, South African T20 League.

Cricket South Africa, wants to be fully committed to the T20 Franchise league, has told all players contracted to their domestic T20 league and have announced a second-string team to play the New Zealand Series.

Record attendance for the SA20 2023 edition

This has ruffled few feathers in the cricketing fraternity and ex-players have criticized this move by South African Board.

Australian Cricket Board

Big bash League


The Australian board hardly allows the national team to participate in the Big Bash League as the league coincides with International Calendar. Test series at home typically clashes with the BBL Season.

Australia prioritizes Test Cricket.

Thanks to their strong domestic circuit they can afford to pull out their Test players from the BBL. The BBL players which include international players from Australia and from other countries helps in attracting huge crowds to the stadium during the BBL season.

With Australia Test team dominating test cricket, they do attract huge crowds especially when they play against India and England.


‘They Don’t Care’, Steve Wagh Slams Cricket Bosses

Australian great Steve Wagh has been very critical with this move of the South African board and has also suggested New Zealand to boycott their Test Series against South Africa.

Steve Wagh has lashed out at the Proteas for disrespecting the sport by sending a substandard squad for the series.

Steve Waugh, A Test Purist and who took Australia to a record 16-straight Test victories, has lashed the International Cricket Council [ICC] for doing nothing to stop it.

In a column in Sydney Morning Herald, Steve said that South Africans don’t care for Test Cricket.

The T20 tournament is slated to start from 10th January and with T20 World Cup just months away, the Proteas have decided to turn their full attention to the shortest format of the game.

South Africa will be led by Neil Brand, a debutant for New Zealand Test Series.


Super Sports View

The writing is on the wall. Test cricket is on life support. Only the cricket purest want to preserve the longest format of the game. If it was not for the ODI World Cup, the 50 over format also is a dying format.

Home Teams struggle to have even 20% of attendance in stadiums for an international test match.

No Compromise on test Cricket

The World Test Championship with its flawed format has not helped in reviving the game as expected. The finalist is decided on the basis of 2 years of performance but finals is a one-off game.

The WTC finals is played in England which gives an edge to non-subcontinental teams.

This is unfair for teams like India, Pakistan or Bangladesh.  A point system to determine the winner should be introduced like the EPL.

The threat of more and more franchise leagues opening up and in some cases IPL franchises contracting players year-round has pushed players to give a blind eye to Test cricket. This can prove detrimental to the existence of Test cricket in the long run.

In the ongoing Australian Test series against Pakistan, spear head and the leader of the bowling pack Shaheen Shah Afridi has been rested for the 3rd and final Test, for him to be fresh to captain the T20 Side which will follow the Test Series.

The long format of the game is already had a decline in terms of quality competitive teams. West Indies who once ruled Test cricket struggles to field 11 players for Test as most of their players are playing franchise cricket across the globe. They however are a top notch T20 Unit. Priorities have changed.  

This proves that Test cricket is not the preferred format for most Test playing nations and the shortest format of the game now rules Cricket.

Now with South Africa appearing to also have put their Test caps on the back burner to accommodate their T20 league, a new precedent is being put in place.


Also Read: The Influence of T20 Cricket on Traditional Test Matches



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