T20 or ODI: Which Cricket Format Is More Popular for Non-Hardcore Cricket Fans?

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Cricket is a widely recognized sport worldwide due to its rich history and universal appeal. It has over 2 billion followers with some watching matches occasionally and others who are ardent enthusiasts. 

Twenty20 Internationals (T20i) and One Day Internationals (ODI) are the most widely used forms by the most popular cricket tournaments today, and casual fans usually go for the latter.

But while the fast-paced action of T20 cricket has undoubtedly drawn a massive following, ODIs continue to hold a special place in the hearts of many casual viewers. So, which format reigns supreme among non-hardcore cricket fans? Let’s dive in and explore the unique appeal of each.

The Thrill of T20 Cricket

T20 cricket is a format where teams get 20 overs (120 legal deliveries) to score as many runs as they can, as the name suggests. These matches are perfect for today’s fast-paced lifestyle because they are typically completed in three hours or less.

“T20 cricket is like a rollercoaster ride. It’s thrilling, intense, and it’s over before you know it,” says former Indian cricketer Virender Sehwag when talking about the essence of the format’s appeal. 

ODI cricket, while longer than T20, still offers a more condensed experience compared to the traditional five-day Test matches. 

Each team gets 50 overs to bat, resulting in games that typically last around eight hours. This format strikes a balance between explosive batting and tactical bowling. It requires teams to carefully strategize their innings.

The appeal of ODIs for casual fans lies in the evolving narrative of the game. It’s a slow burn, where tension builds gradually as teams navigate through different phases of the match. 

“ODI cricket is a game of patience and persistence,” explains former Australian captain Ricky Ponting. “You have to navigate through different phases, adapting your strategies and finding the right balance between attack and defense.” 

This strategic depth also appeals to casual fans who appreciate the nuances of the game and enjoy witnessing the ebb and flow of momentum over the course of a day.

Entertainment Value: Quick Thrills vs. Slow Burns

When it comes to entertainment value, T20 and ODI cricket simply cater to different tastes. 

A T20 match might be compared to a blockbuster action movie, while an ODI is more like a gripping drama series. Both are entertaining but, of course, in different ways. 

Also, since a T20 match can be watched in one evening, it’s more appealing to those cricket punters who want to get their potential rewards right away. 

So, if you’re someone who’s considering betting on cricket matches, you might want to consider wagering the likes of the Indian Premier League (IPL) and the upcoming Cricket World Cup 2024 on popular betting platforms today. 

But before you even claim that Cricket World Cup 2024 deposit bonus from your favorite bookie, you might still want to consider watching and wagering on ODI matches. This is especially the case if you want a slow burn rewarding experience.

Audience and Demographics

Viewership statistics and trends reveal the popularity of both formats among different demographics. T20 cricket has witnessed a surge in popularity, particularly among younger and newer audiences. 

According to recent viewership data from the International Cricket Council (ICC), T20 matches have seen a significant increase in viewership among the 18-34 age group, while ODIs continue to attract a broader demographic, with a strong following among fans aged 35 and above.

The ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2023 had over a trillion minutes in views which shows a 38% increase from its inaugural edition. Streaming platforms have also recorded over 177 billion minutes viewed for the World Cup matches.

Meanwhile, the ODI World Cup 2023 had a tidal watch time of 59 billion minutes. This meant a 22% increase in viewership compared to its previous edition in 2019.

These numbers only show that viewership in both formats is still growing. So, even if we can all agree that T20 is the better format for casual viewers, both are still doing well. That said, we can’t say that ODI matches are now being ignored.


We can’t deny that both T20 and ODI cricket have their unique strengths and appeal to different segments of the cricket fanbase. While T20 cricket may currently hold the edge in terms of popularity among casual fans, both formats are likely to continue thriving. 

However, will probably be T20 cricket that will gain more followers in the coming years, especially now that the sport is attempting to gain popularity in other countries like the United States.

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Asfa Rasheed
Asfa Rasheed
Asfa Rasheed is a lifestyle blogger known for her vibrant personality and diverse interests. With 2 years of experience, she curates content that encompasses travel, food, fashion, and culture, inspiring her audience to explore new experiences and embrace their passions.