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R Ashwin wants 2023 ODI World Cup matches to start early to reduce dew factor


Should India start day-night matches earlier to reduce the effect of dew? R Ashwin certainly thinks so. The Indian offspinner wants the match in the upcoming ODI World Cup, to be played in India in October-November 2023, to start at 11.30 am, two hours before the normal start of day-night ODI games in India.
In a video on his YouTube channel, Ashwin cited the example of India’s first ODI against Sri Lanka in Guwahati to suggest that dew gives teams an unfair advantage when chasing. Sent in to bat, India batted deliberately fast keeping the dew in mind and posted a total of 373. They eventually won by 67 runs, but Ashwin felt that the margin of victory did not reflect his dominance on the day.

“India batted beautifully on a slow wicket and posted a score above par. Still they had to fight for their lives [to win]”The quality difference between the teams is not coming – if you lose the toss, the dew is closing that difference,” he said.

“My suggestion – or rather my opinion – for the World Cup is to look at what venues and what time we are playing. Why shouldn’t we start matches at 11.30am during the World Cup?”

Day-night ODIs in India usually start at 1.30 pm, and extend well into primetime television hours. While starting matches earlier could arguably lead to fair competition, broadcasters may be against such a move given the potential risk of low viewership. However, Ashwin suggested that fans would be ready to watch World Cup matches regardless of the timings.

“People will bring up television viewers and broadcasters, and say people will stop and watch at that time, but won’t they watch the World Cup matches?” He asked. “Recently the T20 World Cup was also held in winter giving priority to summer [for Australia’s home bilateral season], It was not an ideal scenario – T20 is a fast paced game, how do you play it in winter? People will say that is not the case in Australia, but still we need to prioritize the World Cup.

“The ICC knows very well that there will be dew, so move the game forward, and if we start at 11.30, the dew factor will not come into play, and why not? Wouldn’t all cricket fans prefer the world? ” cup and watch the match at 11.30?”

As things stand, Ashwin suggested that teams around the world look at dew as one of the most important factors shaping day-night games in India.

“The ECB recently invited applications for analyst positions, and – I learned this through a few analysts I know – one of the key questions they asked was, ‘Indians in white-ball cricket? How big a factor is dew in the conditions?” They want to bring in the best analytical tools before the 2023 World Cup, and they have asked all the relevant questions, so you can see how important dew is in Indian conditions, everyone thinks in world cricket.”

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