Australian news June 16, 2011

Big Bash League window too narrow for some

Stuart Clark, the former Australian fast bowler and Sydney Sixers general manager, believes it will be difficult for some Test players to take part in the expanded Twenty20 Big Bash League during the briefest of windows between international series in December.

Having announced the appointment of Trevor Bayliss, who has previously coached Sri Lanka and New South Wales, to mentor the Sixers, Clark will now turn his attention to the acquisition of players for his team, which will be based at the SCG.

No stranger to the demands of the schedule during his own Test career, Clark was understandably keen to get as many Cricket Australia-contracted players aligned to the Sixers as possible.

But he also said some would be in need of a significant break between the end of the second Test against New Zealand and the start of the series against India. CA wants to have all of its contracted players available for the first round of the tournament.

"On an individual basis they'll have to judge it," Clark told ESPNcricinfo. "Some of the bowlers or guys who've had a longer run of games will want a longer break than others. We'll just have to play it on a cases-by-case basis and see who we can get. It's good for the tournament, it makes it a better tournament, if they're going to be around."

By the time the first round of the BBL takes place - planned tentatively for December 16-20 - some Australian players will have taken part in eight Tests and two limited overs series' spanning three countries in four months. The captain Michael Clarke, his deputy Shane Watson, and fast bowler Mitchell Johnson are all expected to shoulder an exceptionally heavy workload during that time.

As for Bayliss, Clark was glad to have convinced his former state coach to guide the Sixers.

"I dare say he had offers from a few of the BBL teams, not just from the other one in NSW," Clark said. "He's had a vast amount of experience; I've been lucky enough to play under him, and he can bring that international background into the domestic scene.

"I hope it does [challenge him]. He brings all his experience into it, and he's also a very competitive guy - I think we will see that side of him in the tournament."

Technically still available to play for NSW, Clark has been using his close links to the players around the country to start to form an idea of what his squad may be like.

"I think I've spoken to every man and his dog so far," he said. "It is true that in this job my relationships with the players have made it easier for me to talk to them, but we've got to wait for the state contracts to come out before we can finalise anything."

Daniel Brettig is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Andrew on June 18, 2011, 21:41 GMT

    @tfjones1978 - dunno why, but I'm prepared to give them the benefit of doubt that sanity will prevail. (Can't believe I just said that)!

  • Dummy4 on June 17, 2011, 17:35 GMT

    so the aussies will prepare for the 4 match test series against us the no 1 test team by playing t20 cricket while we will play a 4 day match so it may club vs country again in another country cricket is surely going the football with countries like india australia sri lanka and england (which always was there) and others would soon follow which in a way can be good and bad for the game but if aussies dont play the league and just rest or play sheild matches it will set a example for everyone especially indian players

  • hayden on June 17, 2011, 0:04 GMT

    with an important test series against india taking place they should be playing shield matches in that time to make sure the australian side has the best possible backup should injury or form slumps effect the first XI. will someone tell the CA marketing department we are not india!!! we dont care nor want their stupid gimics espechally when its threatens to disrupt our test team looking to get their no.1 crown back!!!

  • Hardik on June 16, 2011, 22:42 GMT

    If CA announce a squad of 17 again prior to the winter series, It may get diff for the BBL.. :)

  • Dummy4 on June 16, 2011, 12:56 GMT

    I'd like to see all the aussie players rested

  • Terry on June 16, 2011, 12:47 GMT

    Sounds like another brilliant plan by the people that brought you Three innings defeats in Four matches in Ashes tests on home soil. What better way for Australia to prepare for a home test series then to play 20 over matches. Its not as though they are hughly different formats or that they require the sacrifice of skills in one format that is required in the other. The shear fact is that the best preparation that Australia can have is its players playing domestic Shield matches in the lead up to a test series. The worst it can do is what Cricket Australia has planned. Congrats Cricket Australia, your approach will reap the same brilliant results as last years great Ashes triumps.

  • Rajaram on June 16, 2011, 12:18 GMT

    I hope Cricket Australia gets its head in the right direction - that's towards the Test Series - not the Big Bash League for the Test players.As if the ticket sales will be less if the Test Team does not play in th Big Bash League?

  • Tim on June 16, 2011, 10:20 GMT

    Nobody preparing for Test cricket should be playing BBL. The BBL shouldn't even exist, much less be taking place while Tests are still on.

  • far on June 16, 2011, 9:13 GMT

    it all comes down to how much money they will get out of it and good luck to them. but they have to be fit to play for Australia and not be caring injuries

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