BCCI Officials Want To Move Test Matches To Small Towns As Attendance Dwindles
With attendance dwindling at major Test match venues across India, some Board of Control for Cricket in India working committee members "are batting in favour of staging Tests in smaller centres, a formula which seems to have worked with One-Day Internationals," according to Indrani Basu of the TIMES OF INDIA. Sources said that "a proposal to this effect is already with the BCCI, with Rajkot and Cuttack being proposed as additional Test venues." Some BCCI members "strongly feel two more venues should also be added to the proposed list, while others in the working committee want the number of Test venues to be increased from 10 to at least 15." A top BCCI official said, "The attendance in Test matches at bigger venues hasn't been great in recent days, and so it's important to take Test cricket to smaller centers in future." In recent times, centers like Rajkot, Ranchi, Indore, Cuttack, Jaipur, Kochi, Pune and even Dharamshala "have successfully hosted ODIs and attracted large crowds." A BCCI official said, "There is no reason to believe that these venues can't stage Test matches too. Enthusiasm is high among fans in smaller centers, and they still love their cricket" (TIMES OF INDIA, 2/2).