Big Bash League: Cricket Australia considering shortening the tournament to enhance viewership

Cricket Australia is planning to reduce the number of BBL games significantly to strengthen the viewership.

Alex Hales of the Thunder
Alex Hales of the Thunder. (Photo by Mike Owen/Getty Images)

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Cricket Australia are likely to make an attempt of shortening the next season of the Big Bash League(BBL) from 56 games to 40 games in order to revive the tournament. The viewership has gone on a downward spiral after the increase in games in 2018-19 and a lot of efforts have been made to strengthen it including the introduction of three new BBL rules last year. Despite the ongoing Covid-19 issues around the world, the tournament has seen a steady decline which seems to be a concern now.

The recently-concluded BBL 2021-22 season had collided with the Ashes recently and most of the Australian stars were not able to take part in the tournament due to international commitments. The Steve Smith case was more different as he was available for the finals but couldn’t take part as Cricket Australia rejected him from entering the BBL Bio Bubble and noted that he should have registered to play the tournament earlier. The Sydney Sixers who lost the services of Smith went on to lose the finals to the Perth Scorchers as well.

BBL Boss looking closely at the areas that have been to be addressed

BBL Boss Alistair Dobson recently revealed that the reviews of the recently-concluded BBL season have pushed for changes to be made from the next season. He noted about the scheduling and venues being a key part of it as crowd capacity means a lot for the BBL tournament.

“One of the silver linings of COVID is it has given us better opportunities for changes. Everyone is of the mindset that we have to bounce back bigger. We review the season every year and the scheduling is probably our biggest process every year. The shape of the season. Where and when our games are played. We will have a really close look at it ahead of next season. We are in consultation with our key partners about what the best looking BBL is.” BBL boss Alistair Dobson told AAP.

The BBL cheif also admitted that there might be a possibility for a look in to change from eight teams to ten teams which were recently reinstated in IPL for the 2022 edition. “It’s hard to know what the future will look like in a constantly evolving BBL. The BBL is currently made up of eight really strong and passionate clubs. We work really closely with all our clubs on making them as strong as they can be. That is our priority.” he added