Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : October 13th 2013 Contents A61
October 13, 2013 www.guardian.co.tt Sunday Guardian
ABU DHABI---Four teams will vie for the
first world Test championship in England
in 2017, and the ICC is still working out
how to make the competition attractive
Ideas were welcome, International Cricket
Council chief executive David Richardson
said at the logo unveiling ceremony yesterday.
"We are asking people at this stage (about
the format), it s still four years away and we
also have the cricket committee with people
like Mark Taylor, Ravi Shastri and Anil Kumble
in it," Richardson said.
"We want to have something worthwhile
in place to make sure that it doesn t diminish
the credibility of what Test cricket needs to
be."While the prize money has yet to be
finalised, Richardson hoped it won t be less
than $10 million distributed among the four
teams. The ICC set May 1 this year to Decem-
ber 31, 2016 as the qualification period.
Some teams play more than others, a hand-
icap for low-ranked teams such as New
Zealand, Bangladesh and Zimbabwe, and
Richardson said the ICC has yet to set a
minimum number of Tests required to gain
enough points in the rankings to finish among
the top four. Graeme Smith, captain of top-
ranked South Africa, who was accompanied
by Pakistan captain Misbah-ul-Haq, said
the world Test championship has added more
meaning to all and future Test series.
"It s fantastic to have a pathway clearly
identified for the world Test championship
and to know that the top four teams will
have a chance to battle it out to be crowned
the ultimate champions," Smith said.
Misbah said he would like to see a longer
championship instead of a format offering
two semifinals and final. "If you have some
time and you want people to enjoy Test crick-
et you need to give equal chance to all the
teams, like they could play against each other
and then you go for semifinal and final,"
"People want to see Test cricket and if you have
only three games it won t work."
Misbah has quit playing Twenty20 internationals,
but still leads Pakistan in Tests and one-day inter-
nationals at 39. He said the shortest format as one
of the reasons for the reduced popularity of test cricket.
"Twenty20 cricket is dominating nowadays, but
this (world Test championship) will generate some
sort of interest among players," he said.
"Winning a World Cup is something different. You
can be No 1 for some time and then you can just drop
to No 2 or No 3, but once you become world champion,
it means a lot to you." AP
ICC wants an attractive world Test champ
Red Bull driver Mark Webber of Australia, right,
celebrates after taking pole position in the qualifying
session for the Japanese Formula One Grand Prix at
the Suzuka circuit in Suzuka, Japan, yesterday. At
left is his Red Bull team mate Sebastian Vettel of
Germany, who qualified second. AP PHOTO
SUZUKA---Red Bull driver Mark Webber claimed
pole position yesterday for the Japanese Grand Prix,
outqualifying his teammate and runaway champi-
onship leader Sebastian Vettel for the first time this
Webber clocked a time of 1 minute, 30.975 seconds
at the Suzuka circuit, with Vettel just under two-
tenths of a second behind in second place after strug-
gling with his KERS power-boost system.
"Sebastian had a problem so it s a bit of a hollow
pole but you have to grab the opportunities when you
can," said Webber, who is leaving F1 at the end of the
season. "It s a very nice farewell for me on my final
time here at Suzuka and on a phenomenal circuit. It
was a real highlight for me. In general we ve got a
good car for the race." Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton
was third fastest, followed by Lotus Romain Grosjean
and Ferrari s Felipe Massa. Mercedes Nico Rosberg
was sixth ahead of Sauber driver Nico Hulkenberg.
Vettel has won three of the past four races in Japan
and can clinch his fourth successive world title in
Sunday s race. The title will be his if he wins and
nearest rival Fernando Alonso, who was eighth in
qualifying, finishes ninth or worse.
Vettel is looking to join Michael Schumacher and
Juan-Manuel Fangio as the only men to win four
championships in a row. The German, who has a 77-
point lead over Alonso, has won the past four races,
leading after every lap in each of them.
Vettel, who was bidding for his fourth straight pole,
was hobbled by a KERS problem on his first lap of
the final qualifying session but refused to blame yes-
terday s finish on his car s technical problems, which
initially surfaced in the morning practice. AP
Webber takes pole
for Japanese GP
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