The current business model of international cricket reeks of the big three dominance, comprising India, Australia, and England, while other teams still need their chances in Test cricket. In the ongoing World Test Championship cycle, Sri Lanka, despite playing one of the lowest number of games in the cycle, managed to be in contention for a berth in the final, due to less number of matches keeping them in a favourable stead.
Former New Zealand skipper Ross Taylor found great disbalance in that and suggested that efforts must be made to bridge the gap between bigger and smaller Test nations.
"In every cycle, England, India, and Australia are probably going to play most Test matches. I think where we would like to get to is to get the numbers a little bit closer," Taylor said in a virtual media interaction.
"Sri Lanka only played 11 or 12 and were still in the hunt. There's never going to be a perfect formula, because England and Australia have played those traditional five-Test match series for years and years now. It's not the ideal scenario, but it is the best that we have currently. I don't think it is about India, England and Australia playing less, I think it is about trying to get the other nations to up their matches."
"Hopefully at least in a cycle, play a three-match series. It might be something to look into that you have to play a 3-match series to try and make it a little bit more consistent," Taylor added.
Taylor suggested that if the proposition of making India, Australia, and England playing three-match series is not feasible, due to excessive T20Is on offer, smaller nations can play more three-match Test series that would serve the cause better.
"There's always going to be the Ashes series and different teams playing more. If we can get smaller nations playing three-match series more often than not, there's a lot of white-ball cricket being played so it is tough to fit it in but if we can have a minimum of some sort, that you have to play at least one or two three-match series against anyone. At the end of the day it is the format, and that's the thing we're working with.
"I think it is just about a few little tweaks here and there. When you have a competition and a championship like this, there are going to be things that need to be worked on but I think it is making Test cricket more relevant and adding context to the games and hopefully this can be something that kids that are watching and wanting to play T20 can still play the purest form of the sport," Taylor added, explaining how the WTC has now added a new dimension to Test cricket.
"Quite often if you win the first match of a series or go 2-0 up, first and foremost you're just trying to win the series. But now with the bonus of obviously getting as many points as possible and trying to get to the final, it's added a new dimension to Test cricket," Taylor said.
"It gives a different talking point as well. Right until that last series between Sri Lanka and New Zealand, there was still a team able to win away from home to make the final. It's been a great format for Test cricket, but like anything, there's room to improve."