Manish Pandey works Tabraiz Shamsi to deep fine leg for a single. “I’ve Got The Power” plays on the stadium’s PA system. Suresh Raina pushes the next ball straight to cover for a dot. “Here Comes The Hotstepper” blares out. Welcome to the new world of music after every ball in T20 cricket, assuming the paying public cares for it.
Yes, songs have been played on a cricket ground in between overs and after boundaries for a while now. But Cricket South Africa is using the T20Is against India to trial the idea of playing music between deliveries. At the end of the series, the ticketholders will be asked to participate in an online survey and the decision to stop or keep going will be made based on the feedback.
“Twenty20 is played in festive environment,” a CSA official said. “It is followed by families and kids. We wanted to see if our public wants more of the music and dance. We will of course listen to the people and see what the survey says. If they like it, we might even get a professional DJ at our grounds for T20.”
The official said CSA was not taking the lead from what happened in the Trans-Tasman tri-series. Music between deliveries was tried during a game at Eden Park in Auckland last week and it received harsh criticism from the fans, including those on Twitter.
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As in South Africa, the cricket board in New Zealand is in charge of the music on game day. The negative response to the experiment brought immediate results: the music was reduced in the subsequent matches of the tri-series.