ICL: Indian Cricket League

Players should go for loyalty or dollars? Symonds enters IPL debate


Andrew Symonds says the loyalty of Australia’s best players will be tested over the next couple of years as they weigh up representing their country with accepting huge payments to join Twenty20 competitions.

Symonds said in his Sunday Mail column the baggy green was still the “jewel in Australian cricket’s crown”, but admitted the big money would be tempting.

“The way things are heading loyalty is really going to become a major issue, particularly when you can make more money in six or eight weeks than what you can in a whole season,” Symonds said. “Loyalty versus money always makes for an interesting debate. Who wouldn’t be tempted to take a job offering more money for less work?”

Symonds warned the game’s administrators to be careful about the “serious threat” caused by it being more financially rewarding to retire from Tests and ODIs and appear in the Indian Premier League or the Indian Cricket League.

“They need to find a way to be able to work with the IPL so everyone’s available,” Symonds said. “Otherwise you’re going to have blokes retiring early or just saying: ‘Look, it’s not worth the heartache. I can earn more in a very short period of time.”

Last Sunday Symonds was gagged by Cricket Australia over his column when the board felt the allrounder did not understand the complicated nature of the issues. Protecting sponsors is one of Cricket Australia’s main concerns, but other problems surround a rule where only two Australians can appear in overseas domestic teams.

A decision is still to be made on whether Australia goes to Pakistan next month - the players are not keen to go and the trip isn’t mentioned in Symonds’ column - and if they are given permission to appear in the IPL the time is limited. The squad is due to depart on May 10 for the West Indies while the IPL runs until June.

“Right now you’d have to be nervous if you’re a cricket administrator of any of the big cricket-playing countries,” Symonds said. “I’m talking the likes of Australia, South Africa and England. “The pressure’s on big time to really look after the players, especially at the peak and then coming down the back end of their careers. The bottom line is the money on offer in India is not going away and it may even get more and more tempting.”

Source:Cricket News

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