Cricket World Cup: Waugh backs one-day game for revival
ICC Cricket World Cup 2011 Dates: 19 February-2 April Venues: India, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh Coverage:
Highlights on BBC TV
Red Button & BBC Sport website at 2200 GMT every day (UK users only); Live Test Match Special commentary (BBC 5 live sports extra, BBC Sport website, some games also on BBC Radio 4 LW) and live text commentary on all England matches and selected other major games; Also live on Sky Sports
Waugh tips one-day cricket revival
By Matt Slater
BBC sports news reporter
The 50-over format is set for a major revival at the 2011 Cricket World Cup, which starts on Saturday, according to Australian legend Steve Waugh.
The rise of Twenty20 and enduring appeal of Tests have left the one-day game looking squeezed in recent years.
But Waugh believes a successful World Cup for India and their co-hosts Bangladesh and Sri Lanka will return the format to its former popularity.
"You'll see a resurgence in 50-over cricket, especially in India," he said.
"They're so up for it - it's already at saturation point in the local media and if they do well the 50-over game will be right back up there," he told BBC Sport.
The 10th edition of the Cricket World Cup starts with the opening ceremony in Dhaka on Thursday, with the first game - India v Bangladesh - taking place two days later, also in the Bangladeshi capital.
There then follows 41 more group-stage games, over four weeks, before the knock-out stages start with the quarter-finals. This slightly long-winded approach will make it difficult for organisers to sustain interest from beginning to end but it does ensure all 14 teams play at least six games each.
I wouldn't read too much into the Ashes one-day series as England probably had their minds elsewhere a little bit
Waugh, who was speaking at last week's Laureus World Sports Awards in Abu Dhabi, said the marathon schedule also makes it difficult to predict a winner, as injuries will affect every team's chances.
"I've got a sneaky suspicion South Africa might just come under the radar, they've still got a good team. And I wouldn't write off Australia," the 45-year-old said.
"India and Sri Lanka have got a great chance too but you could name a few more. The West Indies could be the outsider that does some damage."
One team not mentioned by Waugh, who played in four Cricket World Cups (winning twice, once as captain), was England, although the 2004 Australian of the Year was impressed with Andrew Strauss's team this winter.
"England played very good Test cricket (in the recent Ashes series) and Australia played very good one-day cricket. But I wouldn't read as much into the one-day series as England probably had their minds elsewhere a little bit," he said.
"It was probably a case of job well done and they were thinking of going home. There were a few injuries as well, so I can understand that."
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