Sydney, Jan 10(ANI): Former Australia one-day all rounder James Hopes has said the cricket authorities need to work hard on making sure the popularity of the one-day game doesn't goes down the drain, suggesting that every limited-overs series count for World Cup qualification to breathe relevance into the 50-over format.
Friday's series opener between Australia and Sri Lanka at the MCG is expected to draw a crowd of fewer than 30,000, given the series ultimately counts for little, the Sydney Morning Herald reports.
Channel Nine is fearful of a ratings drop through the Australian selectors' decision to rest stars Michael Clarke, David Warner and Matthew Wade, and overlook Michael Hussey in his final international summer.
Hopes is a strong supporter of the 50-over game and believes its future is safe given its duration appeals to advertisers, but said followers needed more reason to care.
Hopes said there's nothing riding on the upcoming one-day series between Australia and Sri Lanka, adding it's just a five-match series for nothing,
The all rounder added that the cricket authorities need to follow soccer's viewpoint and got to put some meaning in these series like a qualification process for the World Cup, and then hope that maybe then crowds and the media will actually get behind the game a bit more.
Hopes said one recent change, the use of two white balls per innings, meant the art of swinging an old ball and batting against it would be lost, which would also potentially make the role of spinners redundant. (ANI)