Franchise owners in the Indian Premier League (IPL), who have bought stakes in several other cricket leagues around the world, have now offered England players full-time yearly contracts.
IPL franchises have approached at least six Eng-land players with a full-time yearly deal, according to The Times. The report says the six cricketers include international stars who are playing in the ongoing 16th season of the IPL.
The full-time yearly contracts will make the English players employees of Indian franchises rather than the England Cricket Board (ECB) or English counties.
Currently, IPL franchises have their teams in the T20 tournaments of UAE, South Africa, the Carib-bean and the USA’s Major League (scheduled to start this year).
Meanwhile, Saudi Arabia’s cricket authorities are also interested in launching the world’s biggest cricket league, according to several reports. Reportedly, the Saudi government is in talks with the owners of the IPL to set up a lucrative new competition. If players and their unions show interest in full-time yearly contracts, then soon cricket will step towards the world’s football model.
As reported, the contracts, which will be offered, could be worth upwards of £2 million a year and even as high as £5 million — more than five times the value of the highest England central contracts.
Richard Gould, the ECB’s chief executive, ad-dressed this matter last week and hinted towards a raise in match fees of England players alongside offering some players multi-year contracts.—Agencies