In its bid to promote the traditional version of the game in the age of slam bang Twenty20 cricket, the ICC is contemplating of introducing a Test league from where top four teams would qualify for a quadrennial play-off event to begin in 2013.Apart from the Test play-off, the ICC Chief Executives’ Committee (CEC), which assembled here for a two-day meeting that concluded today, also recommended an ODI league from next year.”The Future Tours Programme should consist of a Test league to provide context for all Test matches. The league would determine the top four teams to qualify for an ICC Test play-off. The play-off should be held once every four years to determine the Test champion team with a request to hold the first such play-off in 2013,” the ICC said in a statement.”The FTP should also consist of a One-Day International league, the first to run from April 2011 until April 2014, culminating in the crowning of an ODI league champion. This would run separate to the ICC Cricket World Cup,” it said.The CEC also recommended that the game’s governing body should consider a 10-team format for ICC’s flagship event, the Cricket World Cup, from 2015 and 16-team format for the men’s World Twenty20 from 2012.The committee also recommended the introduction of Twenty20 International rankings.”I am really excited by what the CEC has proposed.Restructuring international cricket is a significant strategic challenge and one that must be dealt with. I am grateful to the CEC and its working group for making such far-reaching proposals to tackle this important issue,” ICC CEO Haroon Lorgat said.advertisement”Achieving balance and unanimous agreement is not easy but it is a very important piece of work that requires a strategic response,” he said.
Rattled by a dope scandal, Indian athletics finally got something to cheer about when long- jumper Mayookha Johny led the Indian charge with a gold medal on the opening day of the 19th Asian Athletics Championships in Kobe, Japan, on Thursday.Long Jumper Mayookha JohnyDiscus thrower Vikas Gowda added a silver while Asian Games gold medallist Preeja Sreedharan bagged a bronze in the women’s 10,000m race.Mayookha leapt 6.56m in her second jump to open India’s gold medal account on a rain- hit opening day at the Kobe Universiade Stadium to emulate her idol Anju Bobby George, who had won the Asian Championships gold in 2005.China’s Lu Minjia took home the silver by jumping 6.52m while the bronze went to Saeko Okayama of Japan, who had an effort of 6.51m.The women’s long jump event was delayed after the stadium was lashed by rain, which affected the performance of the athletes.Mayookha’s training mate and Commonwealth Games silver medallist MA Prajusha finished sixth with an effort of 6.27m.Mayookha’s effort, though, was below her season’s best of 6.63m, which she recorded in the national inter-state meet in Bangalore last month, and her personal best of 6.64m, which she came up with at the Asian All Star Meet in New Delhi last year.She also failed to go past the 2012 London Olympics and next month’s World Championships ‘B’ qualifying standard of 6.65m.Earlier, in the morning session, national record holder Gowda’s performance was also affected by weather conditions as he finished second with an effort of 61.58m, behind Iran’s Asian record holder Ehsan Hadadi, who also had a below- par 62.27m. The bronze medal went to Wu Jian of China ( 56.61m).This was the Iranian’s fourth consecutive Asian title, though he was well below his season’s best of 65.89m and Asian record of 69.32m.advertisementGowda, who has a season’s best of 64.91 and three marks over 64 metres, has already crossed the Olympics and World Championships ‘ B’ qualifying standard of 63m, while he is yet to touch the ‘A’ standard of 65m.It was a bit of a disappointment, though, for the Indian camp as Preeja had to settle for a bronze in 10,000m.Preeja, who has been struggling to reach peak form, clocked 33:16.55 sec, well below her Asian Games gold medalwinning timing of 31:50:28.Compatriot Kavita Raut, who had won silver in the Asian Games and Commonwealth Games, was a poor sixth with a below- par 35:24.35, much below her personal best of 31:51.44.SE Habitegbrel of Bahrain won the gold in 32:47.80 while compatriot and 2007 champion Kareema Jasim Saleh took silver in 32:50.90 With inputs from PTI.