When will India reach this state?
Footy obviously offers more options for player contracts - they have more top-flight footy clubs in the country (Melbourne itself has over 8) with decently paying salaries and game fees compared to just 6 state teams in cricket. The article talks about150 cricket contracts with the states, compared to 640 offered by footy clubs.
While this competition is obviously cause for concern for Cricket Australia, the other way to look at it is that a young sportsperson Down Under has a choice of sport to build a career in. Contrast that with the choice a 16 year old Indian boy who is inclined towards sports has - cricket is really the only viable option to make any money. The other sports simply suck in terms of return on investment of time and effort. Little wonder we come away with one medal every Olympics, whereas Australia is confident of emerging as the second largest medal winner in Beijing in 2008. And no prizes for guessing why the BCCI has really no motivation to professionalize the game fo cricket.
I think the emergence of other sporting alternatives will benefit not just the boy on the street, but also cricket. With competition from other sports, the cricket establishment and team has to be on their toes, which can only be good. Any chance of that happening in the next 10 years?
Hat tip to Cricinfo for the link.