Kevin Pietersen
Kevin Pietersen (Image Credit: Twitter)

Former England batter Kevin Pietersen believes that one way for England to develop their red-ball team would be to start an afresh tournament that might be similar to ‘The Hundred’.

Although ‘The Hundred’ isn’t quite popular among fans as it doesn’t fulfil any purpose apart from pure entertainment, the idea of the tournament is what Pietersen is looking to implement albeit for red-ball.

With the money elsewhere in the game, the (County) Championship in its current form is not fit to serve the Test team. The best players don’t want to play in it, so young English players aren’t learning from other greats like I did. Batters are being dismissed by average bowlers on poor wickets and the whole thing is spiraling,” Pietersen wrote in a blog on Betway.

England cricket team.
England cricket team. (credits: cricket.com.au)

In The Hundred, the ECB have actually produced a competition with some sort of value. It is the best against the best, marketed properly, and the audience engaged with it. They got new people to the games and I can tell you that the players will have improved markedly for featuring alongside other greats. It’s such a valuable experience,” he added.

The league needs to be marketed well in order to attract interest from other countries’ cricketers and Pietersen believes this would be of great help for the domestic England players.

They now need to introduce a similar franchise competition for red-ball cricket, whereby the best play against the best every single week. They would make money available to attract some of the best overseas players in the world and the top English players would benefit from playing alongside them. It would be a marketable, exciting competition, which would drive improvement in the standard and get people back through the gates for long-form cricket,” Pietersen mentioned.

Southern Brave
Southern Brave were crowned as the champions of the Hundred. (Photo: Twitter)

Eight teams round-robin format was Kevin Pietersen’s recommendation

Similar to the Hundred, there could be a league format where the teams play every other team. Kevin Pietersen thinks that the pitches should favour batsmen so that they can gain some confidence, rather than giving all the advantage to the bowlers.

The pitches are monitored by the ECB so that we’re not seeing majorly bowler-friendly conditions like we do now. We have to have good pitches that reward and encourage strong batting techniques, batting for long periods of time, and that require skill from bowlers to take wickets.

The Hundred
The Hundred (Image Credit: Getty)

I can promise you that the current England team and lots of the best youngsters in the system still see Test cricket, in particular Ashes cricket, as the pinnacle. We need to produce lucrative, high-quality, interesting competitions that reward and improve the best players. This could be one,” Pietersen wrote.

Although the idea in itself does make sense, ECB is known to favour white-ball a lot more and it will be interesting to see whether they change their stance after the Ashes pounding.

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