Too bad for the Hundred, you had fun but there are still lessons to be learned | The Hundred


Wwell, it happened. The first edition of the Hundred is over, after 32 games, 429 sixes, 1,581 four and 3,327 uses of the word ‘match-up’. The Oval Invincibles got away with their proud team name thanks to their women leading their final, and Southern Brave won the men’s competition despite being cruelly endowed with a logo that looked like the gender. utility company that offers online discounts only on Uswitch.

Bathed in the pink and green glow of victory, their winning captain James Vince admitted players shared the same doubts as all other cricketers about the new summer package. “Before this started I think everyone was a bit hesitant about what it would be,” said Vince, holding an H-shaped trophy that will remind Red Dwarf fans of the same letter engraved on Chris’s forehead. Barrie. “But every game feels like a final in a way.”

The atmosphere on the pitch certainly met the hopes of the tournament’s inventors, as did the BBC audience figures. Scientists and cranky people will tell you that this doesn’t prove anything except that free TV is great exposure for any sport, and all kinds of people will enjoy cricket if you get them to it.

But the past five weeks have taught us a few things, and one of them is how to count to 10. So in the spirit of the newly updated game, here are 10 lessons we learned from the Hundred.

1) Teams need identities

While there was a lot of action on the pitch, off the stage the teams felt bland and interchangeable, which isn’t surprising given that these are lab creations. Only a few have built a hallmark yet – including the Oval Invincibles for the women and Birmingham Phoenix for the men. Moeen Ali’s position as captain, which focused on humility above all else, was a heartwarming revelation on how a 21st century sports franchise can be run.

2) Kevin Pietersen belongs to the BBC

His garish (and at times insane) comment threatened to cause a stroke in many Sky Sports subscribers, but KP’s vehement mouth and enthusiasm for the “kiiiiiiiiiidz!” would be much better for the Beeb than the middle-aged Tuffers and Vaughan show they’re currently playing.

3) Those DayGlo kits actually work

Hundreds of products flew off the shelves like a snitch in a Harry Potter gift shop and the bright colors of the outfits and graphics look especially effective on TV, capturing the attention of children already programmed by the powers. psychedelics from Iggle Piggle. and Spongebob Squarepants. You might have thought that Butterkist’s orange kits (Butterkits ™ ️, surely) looked like carrot vomit, but the designers knew what they were doing.

4) The Hundred needs to embrace what he is

The IPL is a soap opera that consumes a nation for six weeks. The Big Bash is an all-Australian family home evening. The Hundred is a cartoon cricket game for kids: Liam Livingstone and Jonny Bairstow’s super-sized six, Imran’s breathtaking expressions, Sunil Narine’s breakaways on the pitch all brought in delicious Tom and Jerry quality at the tournament. Let’s go with that – and if it’s not for you, there’s a lot more cricket out there that is.

5) You must first play bowling

You really have.

Oval Invincibles captain Dane van Niekerk with the Hundred Trophy after beating Southern Brave in the final at Lord’s. Photograph: Tom Jenkins / The Guardian

6) Franchises need stories

No tournament game – not even the eliminators – has lived up to the drama of the Northern Superchargers men’s game against Trent Rockets. Alex Hales was with the tail, needing to find 43 out of 25 balls, when his counterpart Ben Stokes pushed for a delivery that was passed as one to be called a dead ball. The refs obliged, and Hales slammed the rebowling delivery to Stokes at the border, who then dropped him on the rope for six. The rockets scored an unlikely victory – with a big chunk of subtext and thrill.

7) Children will dance to anything

Jax Jones received a much better reception at Lord’s than Atomic Kitten at Trent Bridge 18 years ago, but the attempt to turn The Hundred into a part-time urban music festival never really came to fruition. The halftime acts and DJs picked up from BBC radio were largely ignored on the pitch and it seemed like a tough gig for the performers, as they watched their audiences disappear into the food trucks. But the tracks that covered the end change always drove young audiences crazy, and the encouragement to get up and dance for them helped them commit to a three-hour time slot that isn’t negligible. for young attention spans. We’ve also learned that you can floss and flag four at the same time which is definitely one for umpires next year.

8) London Spirit needs a new name

Spirit seemed the only thing missing from their multi-defeat campaign. Fortunately, there are plenty of alternatives to choose from including London Dry, London Prices, London Measurements, London Weighting, London Buses, London Pigeons, London Pride, and London Riots.

9) Intentions are powerful

The ECB’s decision to make cricket more attractive to women and children has in fact attracted women and children. Yes, a revised Blast could have done the same, but it didn’t, and the T20 night games and finals had become intimidating business for the guys. When the Lord’s games started to get a bit boozy at the start of the tournament, the bars were closed earlier and the rules changed to prevent alcohol from getting into the ground. Now the ECB must make its intention the immediate solution to their disastrous summer schedule, which is already destroying their number one brand, the England test team.

10) The Hundred will change the language of the game

Drummers are drummers now because you have to be non-sexist when you have men’s and women’s matches on the same stage. And we’re really stuck with match-ups.

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