Bowler doesn't want to be part of unsanctioned contest August 8, 2007

'Slim' chance of Warne joining ICL

Cricinfo staff

Shane Warne is worried about "flying in the face of officialdom" © Getty Images

Shane Warne's manager says the legspinner's chances of joining the Indian Cricket League (ICL) are "reasonably slim" because he does not want to be part of an unofficial event. The Indian board has threatened any local players with life bans if they join the league, which is focussing on Twenty20 matches and is planned for September.

Warne's manager James Erskine told the Australian the bowler had not made a decision on whether to join the competition. "There's the small thing about grounds not being made available, the Indian players not being available and being threatened with bans," he said. "I would think the chances are reasonably slim that Shane would do it because it's flying in the face of officialdom and I know he doesn't want to be part of anything that's not officially sanctioned."

However, AAP reported Dean Jones, who is on the ICL's board, had returned from an overseas holiday and would resume negotiations with Warne and Glenn McGrath. McGrath said in Canberra this week he was interested in playing, but Brian Lara is the only high-profile player committed to the league.

"I'm not going to make any comments about players signing or anything like that," Jones said. "Obviously we're talking to them, we're just trying to make sure it goes ahead, that's all."

No players contracted to Cricket Australia have approached the body requesting to appear in the tournament in India. Despite the lack of big names, Jones was confident the series would go ahead.

"The fans and the viewers will be quite happy with the signings we'll get, trust me," he said. "The fixtures and the squads will be released soon, sooner than you think."