Andrew Flintoff is giving serious consideration to becoming a freelancer cricketer according to his manager, Andrew Chandler, in a Sunday newspaper. Flintoff has already received a number of offers, but his recent knee surgery means he will be sidelined for at least six months. On Friday he was awarded an incremental contract by the ECB, but the option of lucrative Twenty20 deals will be very tempting.
Flintoff ’s freelancing would have followed the route expected to be taken by Australian allrounder, Andrew Symonds, who is also eyeing several Twenty20 opportunities around the world after his national career stalled due to disciplinary issues.
“He’ll play for Chennai [Super Kings in the IPL], he might play for an Australian team, a South African team, maybe one in the West Indies,” Chandler told the Observer. “If he hadn’t have been injured he would have probably played in December-January in Australia. And then at the end of January, early February in South Africa. I was already negotiating with them. We were negotiating with South Australia and the Durban team, the Nashua Dolphins. And there’s been an offer from Northern Transvaal [Northerns] as well.”
Flintoff is heading to Dubai for a three-month spell to aid his rehabilitation from a right knee surgery after was operated on a day after helping England regain the Ashes, his farewell Test series. He has targeted a return to full fitness before England’s one-day leg on their tour of Bangladesh next February.
The ECB awarded an incremental contract to Flintoff as they hope will be key part of England’s limited-over sides when fit and has stated he wants to play until the 2015 World Cup. But England coach Andy Flower had said his players could take part in only three weeks of the 45-day IPL next year if they toured Bangladesh. That means Flintoff, the joint highest-paid player in the IPL along with Kevin Pietersen, could stand to lose about half of his US$1.55m fee by going to Bangladesh.
Chandler said there was no clause in Flintoff’s central contract preventing the allrounder from playing all IPL matches. “I’m not saying he’s not going to play for England because he probably will do,” Chandler said. “But he’s definitely going to play for different teams during the year. The England contract does not state anything about not being able to play IPL or anything like that.”
When the contract list was announced, Flower had warned that players’ workload needs to be managed and that participation in lucrative leagues like the IPL will continue to be an issue over the next few years. The amount of time England players were available for the 2009 IPL season had been a major sticking point between the ECB and the Indian board earlier this year before a compromise was reached.
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Post InfoThis entry was posted on Monday, September 14th, 2009 and is filed under Cricket, General.
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