In a development that could seriously affect the future of English cricket, a news report by the Times has revealed how six English cricket players had been asked to quit international cricket by their respective Indian Premier League (IPL) teams. The report said that these players had been asked to make the tough decision of choosing between their international careers and lucrative IPL contracts for a lucrative sum of money. They have been promised that their annual remuneration could range up to 5 million pounds if they agreed to quit international cricket.
The report, however, has not mentioned the IPL teams and the players involved.
There are 13 English players in involved in the 2023 edition of the IPL. They are Ben Stokes and Moeen Ali for Chennai Super Kings, Sam Curran for
Punjab Kings, Harry Brook, Adil Rashid and Liam Livingstone for Sunrisers Hyderabad, Phil Salt for Delhi Capitals, Reece Topley and David Willey for Royal Challengers Bangalore, Jos Buttler and Joe Root Rajasthan Royals, Jofra Archer for Mumbai Indians and Mark Wood for Lucknow Super Giants.
Sam Curran entered the tournament as the most expensive IPL auction signing in history joining the Punjab Kings.
Harry Brook was purchased for the first time while England Test captain Ben Stokes joined Chennai Super Kings.
The Times report indicated that the players had been asked to prioritise their IPL commitments over their international duties due to the scheduling conflicts. The IPL has been rescheduled multiple times over the last two years due to the prolonged period of pandemic, causing it to overlap with some of England’s international tours and fixtures.
The Times report said, “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.”
As expected, the shocking revelation in the Times report has left the bosses of English cricket stunned as this has a potential to disrupt the future of cricket in the country. The news has also sent shockwaves among English cricket fans, who fear that losing their key players could weaken the national team. Some have even called for the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) to take action and protect the players’ international careers.
However, according to some experts, players must be given the freedomm to to choose their own career paths, adding that the IPL has become an important part of the global cricket fictures.
The situation highlights the challenges faced by cricket players in the modern era, where the financial rewards of the IPL can often overshadow the traditional loyalty to their national teams. It also highlights the impact that the two years of Covid pandemic has left on the scheduling and logistics of international cricket.
While, we may not know about the players in question, the development could soon become a trend, forcing players to choose between their national duties and playing for cash-rich teams.