According to a report in PTI via the ‘Times London’, owners of some of the top Indian Premier League franchises are looking to offer an extravagant multi-million dollar deal to six premier England players in their attempts to convince them to quit international cricket and play franchise cricket throughout the year.
The figures being reported are somewhere in the range of 5 million pounds which roughly equates to INR 50 crore. Almost all of the 10 IPL franchises are now dipping their toes in the international markets, backing franchises all over the globe including the Caribbean Premier League, the SA T20 League in South Africa, the ILT20 League of UAE and the upcoming Major League Cricket in USA.
While the original report from ‘Times London’ didn’t mention which franchises are in the fray of offering multi-million contracts to the top England cricketers, there was no mention of which players are involved in the discussion, either.
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More recently, there has been a lot of buzz about Saudi Arabia planning to launch the ‘richest T20 league’ in the world, which could potentially interest IPL franchises as well.
The Times’ report quoted, “Initial discussions have taken place after at least six English players, including some international stars, were approached by IPL franchise owners and asked whether, in principle, they would accept a deal that would make an Indian team their main employer, rather than the ECB or an English county.”
“This development follows discussions among players’ unions around the world about the potential implications of 12-month franchise contracts, which would be a significant step towards the football model of elite players being primarily contracted to their team and released for international duty, rather than the other way around,” read the report further.
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“One source told The Times that contract offers could come as soon as the end of the year,” it added.
With T20 set to stick around and only get bigger with each passing year, one cannot rule out such a possibility, ICC has also been planning to put a cap on how many leagues a certain player can play in a calendar year. The only stumbling block which would stop players from giving up their annual central contracts altogether would be the NOCs required from the cricket boards to participate in a league.
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“The probability of such a model being adopted has grown increasingly likely in recent years as some IPL franchise owners have bought stakes in several T20 tournaments in the UAE, South Africa, Caribbean and now the United States with the new Major League Cricket venture which begins in July,” the newspaper was quoted as saying.
“Discussions have already taken place with a number of high-profile Australian players about full-time deals but this has now been extended to English players. Contracts could be worth upwards of GBP 2 million a year and even as high as GBP 5 million more than five times the value of the highest England central contracts.”
“Reduced IPL deals covering at least three of the rounds would also be on offer. It is unlikely that any of England’s Test stars will walk away from their central contracts in favour of a franchise contract but the sheer amount of money on offer makes that a risk in the future.
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“What is more likely is that players will arrange “bespoke” deals depending on their own circumstances, which could result in them being part-contracted to their county or the ECB and part-contracted to a franchise.”
With inputs from PTI
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News Source: https://www.news18.com/cricketnext/amp/ipl-franchises-offer-inr-50-crore-to-convince-6-top-england-cricketers-to-quit-international-cricket-7649473.html