Big Bash sends Twenty20 format popularity soaring in Australia

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Adelaide, Jan 21(ANI): The Twenty20 Big Bash final between South Australia and Victoria at Adelaide Oval on Saturday will cap a season, which will be remembered for the remarkable surge it gathered for the format in Australia.

Australia was slow to pick up the format of Twenty20 cricket than other countries such as England and South Africa, but this season it has managed to grab popularity, giving the format its first real shot in the arm as a genuine rival to more traditional forms of the game.

Many believe the game will now have a bright future in the country, as fans have flocked to domestic cricket during January like never before, and the players have returned the favour by piling on the entertainment.

"We're pretty sure that 10 years from now we'll be talking about Test cricket, 50-over cricket and Twenty20 cricket as giving cricket the unique proposition of having three distinctive formats," Fox Sports quoted a Cricket Australia spokesperson, as saying.

"Serious players, who originally thought it was hit and giggle and had their doubts, are now finding that it is a sport that tests their skills. It's a sport that has its own tactics and strategies, and I think their views continue to mature on that front," the spokesperson added.

The format has proved highly popular with crowds in excess of 10,000 for games even during the working week.

The current format consists of a 15-match competition in which each state plays five matches against each other. (ANI)

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