(This entry was originally published on Sunday, January 4th, 2009)
Will Luke is a staff writer at Cricinfo. He has been running The Corridor for five years. “The Corridor” is one of the best blogs about cricket. So, if you are a cricket fan then I am sure that you would have come across his writing at Cricinfo. The thing that I admire about Will Luke is that he is always ready to voice his opinion frankly. This is an attractive skill in blogging. He is perhaps one of the successful cricket journalists who could show equal skill in blogging. Earlier today, I e-mailed him some questions for this interview and he replied promptly. Here it is for our readers:
Razib Ahmed: What do you think about the possible impact of Twenty20 cricket on cricket’s traditional version test cricket? Where do you see the future of test cricket?
Will Luke: Recent tense matches have showcased Tests’ strength. Run-chases that were once at best ambitious and at worst suicidally ludicrous are now within reach (or very nearly), and Twenty20 can be partially credited for expanding players’ belief in what they can achieve. The future of Tests is less clear; only in
near close at the moment.
Razib Ahmed: You know that cricket still has limited presence in many parts of the world. Do you think that twenty20 could be an effective tool for ICC to explore new
market for cricket around the world?
Will Luke: It already is. If you read Beyond the Test World (http://blogs.cricinfo.com/btw) which me and my managing editor run, you’ll see just how many Twenty20 competitions are appearing in places like
Razib Ahmed: Do you believe that
Will Luke: Their fade began when McGrath, Gilchrist and Warne retired but their batting lineup is so strong that they’ve been able to cope without them. When their bowling falters, as it now has, then they’re in trouble. There are no ready replacements for McGrath, Lee (when injured) and Clark (when injured). Mitchell Johnson is promising but not yet an attack-leader. Cricket is cyclical;
Razib Ahmed: The recent performance of
Anderson/Broad can combine, they’ll be very difficult to beat. And they must not be afraid to dump the slip streamers, such as
Razib Ahmed: Inspirational
So, do you think that a seemingly possible rivalry between
Will Luke: Not especially. I don’t think
Razib Ahmed: With
Will Luke: Absolutely not! The Ashes stretches back to the 1800s.
Razib Ahmed: Both
Will Luke: Not really. You can’t wave a magic wand. England have had leg spinning
coaches and clinics for about 10 or more years with little or no products coming through. The attitude towards leg spin in
to his mentor Terry Jenner. Great players appear from nowhere. They were born to play; the trick is in keeping them in cricket and not letting them stray to other sports which, traditionally, offer more incentives.
Razib Ahmed: How do you see the involvement of
Will Luke: Stanford will get as much out of cricket as his investment team (and
marketeers) consider they need to boost their wallets and his profile. He’ll then pull the plug. It might be next year or in 10. No one knows other than Stanford. He is a businessman first and foremost, not a cricket fan.
Razib Ahmed: How do you see the ICL-IPL conflict? Do you think that ICL and IPL could be beneficial for the development of cricket?
Will Luke: Possibly. It might improve the standards of Twenty20 cricket, which could then drip down into other formats, but I’m not a supporter of what is essentially a league to make millions for one man and one board.
Razib Ahmed: Now, tell us something about your blog. What is your future plan with the blog?
Will Luke: No immediate plans. It’s five years old and I have increasingly little time to keep it going, but hopefully there will be a few good contributors over the next few months which will be fun.