South Africa are the current World No 1 in Test rankings, and thus holders of the mace © Getty Images
South Africa are the current World No 1 in Test rankings, and thus holders of the mace © Getty Images

 

Jan 14, 2014

 

The International Cricket Council‘s planned World Test Championship for 2017 seems a far-off dream as days pass by. All signs point to the ICC cancelling the Championship at a summit later this month.

 

Various English cricket writers have been suggesting for some weeks that it would not see the light of day (it had initially been set for 2013) and that perhaps instead there will be a reprieve for the once doomed 50-overs Champions Trophy, reported Sport24.co.za.

 

The ICC Champions Trophy, last held in England in 2013, does not have the charm and gravity of the World Cup, although it has a better strength-versus-strength feel and is in the ODI format.

 

Sponsors and broadcasters have reportedly not exactly been hurdling each other to secure rights to the Test Championship, whilst another potentially major snag is hosts England’s slip to No 4 in the Test rankings – meaning there is no guarantee they will even qualify for the maiden Championship on their soil.

 

Reports from the UK also suggest that as partial appeasement for the Championship is being shelved, financial incentives to seek prime spots on the ICC Test rankings will be increased.

 

Should the Championship indeed be removed from the itinerary, Test connoisseurs are sure to only crank up pressure for the best countries to only meet each other more consistently in the endangered but still premier format, and for near-meaningless two-Test series between them (as has just occurred between South Africa and India) to cease.