London: The global recession, it seems, has taken the sting out of Twenty20 cricket, which not too long ago, was billed as the sport's unstoppable runaway train.
According to The Sun, Twenty20 cricket is not going to die, but it is going to have its wings clipped. It may have to survive on its product as much as its rowdy bells and whistles.
The rebel Indian Cricket League has not paid its players for several months and has postponed a competition that was due to start next month.
The glamorous Indian Premier League, the officially sanctioned tournament which includes the likes of Shane Warne, Muttiah Muralitharan and Shoaib Akhtar, is in no danger of folding but backers are now much more cautious than they were.
The high-priced, but bottom-of-the-table, Deccan Chargers have lost their major sponsor and attempts by the owners to sell the franchise have been unsuccessful.
Several other teams have also lost sponsors, with Cricinfo revealing an independent industry assessment of basic costs and expenses suggested most franchises have lost over six million dollars in their first year.
Australia had grand plans to join New Zealand and South Africa in a three-way Twenty20 league in 2011 but there is less talk about that project every week.
Competition organisers say there is still a queue of people, including the famous Tata Steel Corporation and Sahara Enterprises, who would snap up a franchise on Sunday - but the price may not be what it was.