Press Release 5 January 2009

Perth mathematician claims intellectual property rights over 20/20 cricket

Dr George Christos has recently written to the International Cricket Council (ICC), requesting recognition that he first came up with the idea of 20/20 cricket, in a letter sent to the ICC (with a copy to the England and Wales Cricket Board) in May 1997.

Dr Christos, who was a mathematician at Curtin University, Perth, Western Australia, at the time, came up with the idea about 20-overs cricket, to eliminate the need for a rain-rule as in 50-over one-day cricket. He had previously submitted a rain-rule for one-day cricket, called the 'wicket-averaging method', to the ICC, but the Duckworth-Lewis (DL) method was chosen over his idea.

Dr Christos, said “Driven by some jealousy, and a detestation of the DL method, I wanted to come up with a shortened cricket match, that eliminated the need to use the complicated DL method, that was not understood by players and spectators, and in my view ruined one-day cricket.”  "This is why I came up with 20/20 cricket", he said. 

In his letter to the ICC, dated  2 May 1997, he also points out that a shorter cricket match would lead to much more exciting cricket, and as it would last for about 2-3 hours, making it comparable in duration to a football match of any code, this would enable families to attend, and viewers to watch. The EWCB expressed interest in the idea at the time (letter of reply June 1997) but it seems they have since decided to claim it to be their own idea.  On it states that the EWCB discussed the idea of a shorter cricket match in 1998 and 2001. The first 20/20 match was incidentally played in 2003.

Dr Christos said he had contacted the ICC about this matter a couple of years ago, through a webform on the ICC website, but had not received a response. “Maybe it never reached the top level”, he said. Asked why it has taken him so long to claim intellectual property of this idea, Dr Christos said he had been seriously ill over the last 5-6 years.

Dr Christos now wants recognition of his intellectual property to be posted on all 20/20 cricket websites, and to be acknowledged in 20/20 cricket match broadcasts.

Dr Christos said that if recognition was not forthcoming from the ICC (and the EWCB) he would seek legal advice in February 2009.

Dr Christos said copies of his May 1997 letter and the responses he received from the ICC and the EWCB, together with other information have been posted on the website:

For further information, contact

Dr George Christos
Perth Western Australia
Tel. 61-8-93781611

(mobile 0410204958)