An introduction to the Champions Trophy

TheRev Roar Rookie

By TheRev, TheRev is a Roar Rookie

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    In a world where cricket is battling to remain relevant, the Champions Trophy is about to arrive to assist calibrate our minds, values and priorities relating to the great game.

    In a year in which the Australian limited overs team played a series in New Zealand while the Test team was in India, resulting in previously dropped players getting games and even the captaincy, a One Day tournament that means the world to aspiring cricketers cannot come too soon.

    What is the Champions Trophy?
    Appropriately born in the same year as Jaden Smith, 1998, the competition started life known as the ICC Knock Out Trophy. It then changed its name to the ICC Champions Trophy in 2002 to make everyone involved feel like a Champion, and everyone not involved, well…you get the idea.

    Also, it meant new stationery.

    Often referred to as the Commonwealth Games of cricket tournaments, the Champions Trophy is a knock-out competition involving the eight nations who also play Test Cricket.

    Yes, I know there are ten nations who play Test Cricket, but the ICC only let eight of them play in this tournament.

    It used to be held every two years, then it was every three years, now its every four years, because reasons.

    The tournament used to be held in different nations to help promote the game, but the ICC decided that was stupid and now seems content to let either England or India host it.

    England has been traditionally chosen because of its multicultural society, meaning fans supporting all nations are expected to turn up. At least all the nations participating.

    India has been presumably chosen because they make the rules.

    Australia have been the most successful team to participate in the competition, winning two Champions Trophies, enabling their players to make odd statements about being twice the Champions.

    Australia's David Warner and skipper Michael Clarke

    (Photo: AAP)

    Who is involved?
    The Champions Trophy involves almost everyone that plays cricket, a celebration of exclusivity for exclusivities sake if you will.

    Rather than try and grow the game in new markets (countries) and give developing teams greater exposure, experience and revenue, the Champions Trophy

    It used to feature more teams, the 2004 competition featured a team from the United States and the Netherlands played in the 2002 competition, but the ICC have rightfully put a stop to all that rot.

    Can you imagine it, the Netherlands!

    What to expect?
    Fans can expect a minimum of fifteen One Day International cricket matches to occur, and possibly some associated press and commentary on the games.

    The eight teams involved are divided into two pools, which play off against each other in knock-out games.

    Pool A involves Australia, Bangladesh, England and New Zealand.

    Pool B contains India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and South Africa.

    This iteration of the Champions Trophy starts approximately ten days after the IPL finishes, so all teams should have their full complement of players available.

    This may not apply to the West Indies who haven’t experienced a melt-down of the relationship between players and administrators so, like an ATM, are due for a few withdrawals

    Pool B looks to be the most challenging, with the winner of that group likely to go ahead and win it all, unless they’re too knackered from playing in such tough qualifying games.

    Indian batsman Virat Kohli celebrates after India won the ICC World Twenty20 cricket tournament second semi-final match against South Africa at The Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium in Dhaka on April 4, 2014.†India plays Sri Lanka in the final. AFP PHOTO/ PUNIT PARANJPE


    South Africa are currently the highest-ranked ODI team and are better placed than almost any to go all the way to the final and choke.

    India could beat South Africa and Pakistan could beat a team of specially programmed robot ninja cricketers on their day, but I don’t think that is going to happen. Particularly the robot ninja thing.

    Australia are the highest ranked team in Pool A, though New Zealand have an enviably balanced team of big hitters, fast bowlers, tricky bowlers, crafty bowlers and nurdlers. The nurdlers sure must feel stupid next to the crafty bowlers.

    England have pieced together a team that has recently bested the Irish ODI side, so may be a little surprised to come up against full time professionals, rather than plumbers. I expect them to be cordial hosts.

    Getting hassled by a parent or partner about spending too much time playing video games? Now, you can tell them the story of how some ordinary gamers scored $225k for just seven weeks of work.

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    The Crowd Says (6)

    • May 9th 2017 @ 10:45am
      Ouch said | May 9th 2017 @ 10:45am | ! Report

      Wasn’t aware we’d won it twice.

    • May 10th 2017 @ 1:49pm
      nickbrisbane said | May 10th 2017 @ 1:49pm | ! Report

      The West Indies are not in your two pools

      • Roar Pro

        May 10th 2017 @ 3:15pm
        Andrew Young said | May 10th 2017 @ 3:15pm | ! Report

        Because Bangladesh have replaced them this year.

    • May 11th 2017 @ 11:23am
      Timmuh said | May 11th 2017 @ 11:23am | ! Report

      Champions Trophy story, photo is World Cup. I think that says everything about this tournament.
      It started as a tournament to raise money for Associates, then became marketed as mini-world-cup, and all along results have been about as relevant as a random nobody making a comment on The Roar.

    • Roar Pro

      May 11th 2017 @ 11:38am
      Andre Leslie said | May 11th 2017 @ 11:38am | ! Report

      A good laugh…. had me grinning many times. I also struggle to understand the relevance of the Champions Trophy, and wish that the money used for this tournament could be used to run an enlarged T20 World Cup. It seems such an obvious way to grow the sport.

      My favourite sentence:

      “It used to be held every two years, then it was every three years, now its every four years, because reasons.”

      • Roar Rookie

        May 11th 2017 @ 6:25pm
        TheRev said | May 11th 2017 @ 6:25pm | ! Report

        Thanks Andre.

        I really hope that Cricket Administrators get their collective act together and put some structure around the sport, making each game relevant and an event. Things like the Champions Trophy give the whole sport a sense of amateurism and tar the whole sport with the greedy brush.

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