Former Australian cricketer David Hussey believes One-Day Internationals could be gone completely in the near future.
The 50-over cricket format has lost major popularity over recent years, largely thanks to the introduction of T20 cricket and the Big Bash.
Only 24,329 fans turned up to the Australia Day contest between Australia and England at the Adelaide Oval last week, a concerning tally coupled with the demise of TV audiences.
Hussey, who played 69 ODI’s for Australia, fears for the future of the format if not for significant changes.
“I can (see a time when ODI’s are completely gone) and I don’t think it’s too far away,” Hussey said.
“Outside of the World Cup, I’m not really interested in the 50-over format.
“I’m more interested in the T20 competitions throughout the world and whose making 50 runs off 20 balls and making hundreds off 50 balls. It’s a really exciting game.”
Even as a lover of cricket and someone who is still involved in the game, Hussey admitted he opted to watch the Australian Open final over the opening game at the new Optus Stadium in Perth.
“I must admit I didn’t watch the Perth game, I watched the tennis – the (Roger) Federer (vs. Marin Cilic) final,” Hussey said.
“It’s unfortunate, being a cricket lover and being on the outside now, I always like to see if Australia is doing well or doing poorly and you want to support your friends that you played with.”
Hussey explained how the length of the format loses the interest and engagement of fans, with most viewers preferring the action-packed shorter format of T20.
“It’s six hours out of your day and a lot of people are time-poor and that’s why everyone is gravitating to T20, its more exciting, its more unpredictable,” Hussey said.
“Whereas the one-day format, there is an exciting part, which is the first 10 overs, then there is a bit of boredom and then there is excitement at the back end of the innings.
“Maybe they can re-invent it with a couple more power plays in the 50-over format, but for mine I’m really enjoying the T20 format at the moment.”