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T20 has benefited the game: Tony Blair

Press Trust Of India
Sep 28, 2011 at 03:52pm IST

New Delhi: Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair said Twenty20 cricket is a good advertisement for the game since more people are watching the sport with the advent of the slam-bang format.

"I am more of a Test cricket buff but Twenty20 has brought a new dimension to the game and has made people watch the game, which is great," said Blair, who is in the Indian capital to promote inter-faith harmony among students through his 'Tony Blair Faith Foundation'.

Sporting a white shirt and blue jeans, Blair also spoke to a group of under-privileged students at the British High Commissioner's residence in New Delhi.

T20 has benefited the game: Tony Blair

Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair said Twenty20 cricket is a good advertisement for the game.

Blair also faced a few balls from cricketer Rohan Gavaskar, son of legendary Indian batsman Sunil Gavaskar, during a mini-cricket match which was a part of the programme.

Asked about India's whitewash against England in the recent Test and ODI series, Blair said it was nice to see his nation dominating the series.

"England played very well against India and it is good to see the country doing well in sports," said Blair, who was an under-13 cricket captain before turning a soccer fan.

Blair also hoped that by hosting Olympic Games next year in the city of London, his country would be able to revive their legacy as a strong sporting nation.

"I hope the Olympics brings a revival of sports legacy in the country. Sports is a good policy to make the youths responsible," he said.

"My government did try to promote sports and I hope the London Olympics helps to revive our legacy as a sporting nation," he added.

Talking about his foundation, Blair said his organisation was trying to understand the views of different religions on global issues such as environment, health and poverty.

The foundation, which already has a presence in about 94 schools in the country, is seeking to expand the programme.

"Religious conflict is the biggest issue now and there is a great potential of religion and faith to create a better understanding in the world."

"India is a spiritual country with a peaceful co-existence of different religions and faiths. So the foundation is looking to expand and bring other schools under its ambit," Blair said.

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