County news August 16, 2010

Cork frustrated by Champions League absence

  shares 18

Dominic Cork has expressed his disappointment at not being able to take Hampshire to the Champions League in South Africa after leading them to the Friends Provident t20 title. They clinched the trophy by losing fewer wickets as scores finished level against Somerset but, unlike last year when Somerset and Sussex headed to India in October this season, there are no places for English counties due to a fixture clash.

The Champions League runs from September 10-26 which coincides with the closing two weeks of the domestic season, including the conclusion of the County Championship and CB40, and also England's one-day series against Pakistan. The ECB had brought the end of the season forward by a week under the belief the tournament would be held in late September but it was shifted so that India could play Australia.

It left the ECB with no choice but to say to counties couldn't take part because of the extensive changes that would have been required to the domestic fixtures. There is a certain irony, then, that Hampshire with their strong IPL links to Rajasthan Royals are one of the teams that would have qualified for the Champions League and Cork said it was a major loss for the club as well as English cricket.

"It's a disappointment for me as a player because I'd have loved to have gone but also for the guys who have performed so well, the younger players who would have benefited from playing against top international cricketers," he told Cricinfo Switch Hit podcast. "It's just a shame we won't be able to go and I hope the ECB are looking at that to make sure counties are represented in the biggest competitions in the future.

"We've seen how when the England players were first refused a chance to go to the IPL England's Twenty20 campaign was disastrous and when they were allowed to go all of a sudden we win a World Cup in West Indies," he added. "That's no coincidence, that's the fact that players are able to perform in the biggest competitions. Hopefully now the ECB can look at the Champions League, put all these rows to bed with India and sort it out because English cricket will suffer if we don't have clubs represented."

It is hoped that from next year there will be a clear window after the English season which will allow counties to rejoin the tournament although there remains a feeling that the ECB have been left behind in the global development of Twenty20 despite inventing the format back in 2003. Discussions remain ongoing about the structure for domestic cricket from next season with serious movements being made towards a franchise-style structure based around the Test grounds.

Cork believes the biggest change that needs to be made is a reduction in the number of matches after an explosion in fixtures meant 151 games in this year's Friends Provident t20. But he thinks that county teams would be able to hold their own against IPL franchises.

"The English Twenty20 is a very strong tournament," he said. "It was too long with 16 qualifying games and the ECB need to look at that because we don't want to reach overkill, but the fact we can attract some very good Twenty20 players, and the fact there are some good domestic players, means we can be very proud in having a strong competition. Hopefully we can keep it as strong as possible and I'm sure if we were able to play IPL teams all counties would put up a good performance."

For a full interview with Dominic Cork listen to Tuesday's edition of the Switch Hit Cricket Show

Andrew McGlashan is an assistant editor at Cricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • on August 19, 2010, 11:59 GMT

    Let's stop calling this the Champions League because it isn't a real Champions League. One of Hampshire's key players, Neil McKenzie, would not be eligible to play for them as he's already committed to his South African side in the tournament. Nor is this the only example, Mike Hussey is one of several players who've already been in this position. This is a "Mickey Mouse" tournament, albeit a wealthy one, but bears no resemblance to the real Champions League where once a player commits to one club, he's then cup-tied and can't play for any other. Also, what happens if the tournament gets moved to August? End the English season in the middle of the summer? Well done on winning the T20 Cork, but now concentrate on making sure Hampshire stay in Division 1 of the County Championship. That's far more important.

  • on August 18, 2010, 17:19 GMT

    I think its better if they dont call it Champions Leageue anymore and starting thinking about new name because of lack of Champions Team in the League, Last there was no Pakistan (World Champion a that time) and now Current Champions England are not Participating in the league.........................

  • rko_rules on August 17, 2010, 16:05 GMT

    I'd like to say also about Pakistani teams which are not playing in this CLT20, which is very unfortunate. Even last year, Pakistan the world champions of T20 didn't participate in CLT20 and this year as well, England world T20 champs are not participating, which is very unfortunate. It really disappoints me when we have only 10-12 nations playing Cricket, why cant we move forward together. Why we have so conflicts in between us and cant have same opinion?? I hope next year, in this prestigious Clt20 tournament, teams from the world champion country will be participating.....

  • rko_rules on August 17, 2010, 15:54 GMT

    I think Dominic was in very good form and was feeling good about his bowling and body fitness as well. As he is coming to the end of his career, any player would thought in that way. There's nothing wrong in that. Bcoz Cricket is changing and expanding pretty fast, first national leagues like IPL, BIG BASH, Friends Provident t20 and South African league, which are very popular and now Champions League T20 is gaining popularity as well, so any player would like to be the part of this era and experience all this. Bad luck this time but Good luck to Dominic Cork for the next yr as I hope next yr CLT20 will be held in Australia and atleast two county teams will be representing next yr.

  • on August 17, 2010, 14:42 GMT

    @ Zahidsaltin

    The answer to your question is: because India invented it..lol

  • military-medium on August 17, 2010, 12:11 GMT

    rovar, if you actually read the article then you'd have seen the quote that ShahidAfridiFan used. It's a fair comment too, by Cork.

    on_the_level I think we all felt the same way, just that we didn't know which teams it would be that would miss out. These handbags from Giles Clarke and Modi are selfish and detrimental to the games in both countries. As Cork said it is the younger home grown players that will suffer in the long term as they don't get to compete against the best. It also doesn't help when half of the best clubs in the world aren't invited.

  • kpisthebest on August 17, 2010, 11:43 GMT

    Shahidafridifan,

    You must have seen a different IPL as I do remember Colly, Lumb and KP doing well in the IPL. In fact KP averaged over 50 in IPL 2010.

  • Rohan0309 on August 17, 2010, 10:56 GMT

    Zahidsaltin: You need to check your facts, buddy! India doesn't organise Champions League T20. It's a combined effort of the BCCI, CSA and CA. Though the initiative was started by the BCCI. And CLT20 will not be an ICC event, not till we have a T20 WC. And definitely not when it involves domestic teams from different countries. Because ICC doesn't govern domestic cricket.

  • Gizza on August 17, 2010, 9:57 GMT

    @Zahidsaltin, it is NOT organised by India! The Champions is jointly and equally organised by Australia, South Africa and India. They were the founding members. In fact Australia and South Africa thought about this first and then India joined later.

    If there was no IPL and no T20, the first Champions League would have been an inter-club/state/county/region One-Day 50 over competition. Also note that the second Champions League is being held in South Africa but not due to any security threat in India this time around.

    In fact I'm expecting the third Champions League to be held in Australia. Maybe they might even consider New Zealand co-hosting the event (even though they weren't a founding member) because then there will be three (perhaps four by that time) host teams and more home support which will mean larger crowds.

  • lucyferr on August 17, 2010, 9:00 GMT

    England needs to wake up and smell the tea. They aren't in control of international cricket any more. India is. Global tournaments will be moved for India, not England. England should make more flexible domestic fixtures that can be moved two, three, four, or more times for every change the Board for the Control of Cricket by India might make. Money talks, and England doesn't have any any more. Le Raj est mort, Vive le Raj!

  • on August 19, 2010, 11:59 GMT

    Let's stop calling this the Champions League because it isn't a real Champions League. One of Hampshire's key players, Neil McKenzie, would not be eligible to play for them as he's already committed to his South African side in the tournament. Nor is this the only example, Mike Hussey is one of several players who've already been in this position. This is a "Mickey Mouse" tournament, albeit a wealthy one, but bears no resemblance to the real Champions League where once a player commits to one club, he's then cup-tied and can't play for any other. Also, what happens if the tournament gets moved to August? End the English season in the middle of the summer? Well done on winning the T20 Cork, but now concentrate on making sure Hampshire stay in Division 1 of the County Championship. That's far more important.

  • on August 18, 2010, 17:19 GMT

    I think its better if they dont call it Champions Leageue anymore and starting thinking about new name because of lack of Champions Team in the League, Last there was no Pakistan (World Champion a that time) and now Current Champions England are not Participating in the league.........................

  • rko_rules on August 17, 2010, 16:05 GMT

    I'd like to say also about Pakistani teams which are not playing in this CLT20, which is very unfortunate. Even last year, Pakistan the world champions of T20 didn't participate in CLT20 and this year as well, England world T20 champs are not participating, which is very unfortunate. It really disappoints me when we have only 10-12 nations playing Cricket, why cant we move forward together. Why we have so conflicts in between us and cant have same opinion?? I hope next year, in this prestigious Clt20 tournament, teams from the world champion country will be participating.....

  • rko_rules on August 17, 2010, 15:54 GMT

    I think Dominic was in very good form and was feeling good about his bowling and body fitness as well. As he is coming to the end of his career, any player would thought in that way. There's nothing wrong in that. Bcoz Cricket is changing and expanding pretty fast, first national leagues like IPL, BIG BASH, Friends Provident t20 and South African league, which are very popular and now Champions League T20 is gaining popularity as well, so any player would like to be the part of this era and experience all this. Bad luck this time but Good luck to Dominic Cork for the next yr as I hope next yr CLT20 will be held in Australia and atleast two county teams will be representing next yr.

  • on August 17, 2010, 14:42 GMT

    @ Zahidsaltin

    The answer to your question is: because India invented it..lol

  • military-medium on August 17, 2010, 12:11 GMT

    rovar, if you actually read the article then you'd have seen the quote that ShahidAfridiFan used. It's a fair comment too, by Cork.

    on_the_level I think we all felt the same way, just that we didn't know which teams it would be that would miss out. These handbags from Giles Clarke and Modi are selfish and detrimental to the games in both countries. As Cork said it is the younger home grown players that will suffer in the long term as they don't get to compete against the best. It also doesn't help when half of the best clubs in the world aren't invited.

  • kpisthebest on August 17, 2010, 11:43 GMT

    Shahidafridifan,

    You must have seen a different IPL as I do remember Colly, Lumb and KP doing well in the IPL. In fact KP averaged over 50 in IPL 2010.

  • Rohan0309 on August 17, 2010, 10:56 GMT

    Zahidsaltin: You need to check your facts, buddy! India doesn't organise Champions League T20. It's a combined effort of the BCCI, CSA and CA. Though the initiative was started by the BCCI. And CLT20 will not be an ICC event, not till we have a T20 WC. And definitely not when it involves domestic teams from different countries. Because ICC doesn't govern domestic cricket.

  • Gizza on August 17, 2010, 9:57 GMT

    @Zahidsaltin, it is NOT organised by India! The Champions is jointly and equally organised by Australia, South Africa and India. They were the founding members. In fact Australia and South Africa thought about this first and then India joined later.

    If there was no IPL and no T20, the first Champions League would have been an inter-club/state/county/region One-Day 50 over competition. Also note that the second Champions League is being held in South Africa but not due to any security threat in India this time around.

    In fact I'm expecting the third Champions League to be held in Australia. Maybe they might even consider New Zealand co-hosting the event (even though they weren't a founding member) because then there will be three (perhaps four by that time) host teams and more home support which will mean larger crowds.

  • lucyferr on August 17, 2010, 9:00 GMT

    England needs to wake up and smell the tea. They aren't in control of international cricket any more. India is. Global tournaments will be moved for India, not England. England should make more flexible domestic fixtures that can be moved two, three, four, or more times for every change the Board for the Control of Cricket by India might make. Money talks, and England doesn't have any any more. Le Raj est mort, Vive le Raj!

  • rovar on August 17, 2010, 7:00 GMT

    It seems someone is jelous........who is that? Oh.....ho.....ho....ho it is ShahidAfridiFan. Sounds like he is a Pakistani. No doubt he came up with this comment. Grapes r always sour for fox. I doubt their players will b picked by any IPL franchise this year as well. There r reasons for that the way they r performing, even bangladesh, Zimbabwie & must say even Afghanistan will be fancying their chances.

  • on August 17, 2010, 6:04 GMT

    A club cricket competition is a sideshow at best, unless someone stops all the meaningless International matches going on.

  • on August 17, 2010, 5:07 GMT

    Hahaha ! Afridi Fan does it still hurt that Pakistan were denied a chance to take take in the IPL this year. Case of sour grapes right!! Happens

  • soorajiyer on August 17, 2010, 3:32 GMT

    When Dhoni said "if India wins then its positive effect. If India loses then its negative effect of IPL". How true this is.

    "If you win you were fresh because u did not play t20. If you lose, then you are tired becuase u played t20."

    Can you cut these crap please? Its a sport - You win some, you lose some!

  • Zahidsaltin on August 17, 2010, 0:40 GMT

    Champions League should be an ICC event. I could never understand why India is allowed to organise Champions League when clubs from various countries are involved in it.

  • on_the_level on August 16, 2010, 23:47 GMT

    Did he feel the same way BEFORE Hampshire won the competition?

  • ShahidAfridiFan on August 16, 2010, 23:31 GMT

    Dominic Cork: "We've seen how when the England players were first refused a chance to go to the IPL England's Twenty20 campaign was disastrous and when they were allowed to go all of a sudden we win a World Cup in West Indies,"

    I guess we have all seen India who have played in all of the IPL editions but have failed to reach the semis since the IPL came into being even though they won the first T20 cup. IPL showed last year that the quality of cricket was very poor and it was mainly a commercialized Bollywood show rather than a sport. Another point is that of all the english players in the IPL none even performed least of all KP who got the man of the series in the T20 cup.

  • MananWad on August 16, 2010, 19:17 GMT

    I think ECB is thinking about their ego and they fail to understand that at the end loss is theirs. Wake up ECB!!!!!!!

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  • MananWad on August 16, 2010, 19:17 GMT

    I think ECB is thinking about their ego and they fail to understand that at the end loss is theirs. Wake up ECB!!!!!!!

  • ShahidAfridiFan on August 16, 2010, 23:31 GMT

    Dominic Cork: "We've seen how when the England players were first refused a chance to go to the IPL England's Twenty20 campaign was disastrous and when they were allowed to go all of a sudden we win a World Cup in West Indies,"

    I guess we have all seen India who have played in all of the IPL editions but have failed to reach the semis since the IPL came into being even though they won the first T20 cup. IPL showed last year that the quality of cricket was very poor and it was mainly a commercialized Bollywood show rather than a sport. Another point is that of all the english players in the IPL none even performed least of all KP who got the man of the series in the T20 cup.

  • on_the_level on August 16, 2010, 23:47 GMT

    Did he feel the same way BEFORE Hampshire won the competition?

  • Zahidsaltin on August 17, 2010, 0:40 GMT

    Champions League should be an ICC event. I could never understand why India is allowed to organise Champions League when clubs from various countries are involved in it.

  • soorajiyer on August 17, 2010, 3:32 GMT

    When Dhoni said "if India wins then its positive effect. If India loses then its negative effect of IPL". How true this is.

    "If you win you were fresh because u did not play t20. If you lose, then you are tired becuase u played t20."

    Can you cut these crap please? Its a sport - You win some, you lose some!

  • on August 17, 2010, 5:07 GMT

    Hahaha ! Afridi Fan does it still hurt that Pakistan were denied a chance to take take in the IPL this year. Case of sour grapes right!! Happens

  • on August 17, 2010, 6:04 GMT

    A club cricket competition is a sideshow at best, unless someone stops all the meaningless International matches going on.

  • rovar on August 17, 2010, 7:00 GMT

    It seems someone is jelous........who is that? Oh.....ho.....ho....ho it is ShahidAfridiFan. Sounds like he is a Pakistani. No doubt he came up with this comment. Grapes r always sour for fox. I doubt their players will b picked by any IPL franchise this year as well. There r reasons for that the way they r performing, even bangladesh, Zimbabwie & must say even Afghanistan will be fancying their chances.

  • lucyferr on August 17, 2010, 9:00 GMT

    England needs to wake up and smell the tea. They aren't in control of international cricket any more. India is. Global tournaments will be moved for India, not England. England should make more flexible domestic fixtures that can be moved two, three, four, or more times for every change the Board for the Control of Cricket by India might make. Money talks, and England doesn't have any any more. Le Raj est mort, Vive le Raj!

  • Gizza on August 17, 2010, 9:57 GMT

    @Zahidsaltin, it is NOT organised by India! The Champions is jointly and equally organised by Australia, South Africa and India. They were the founding members. In fact Australia and South Africa thought about this first and then India joined later.

    If there was no IPL and no T20, the first Champions League would have been an inter-club/state/county/region One-Day 50 over competition. Also note that the second Champions League is being held in South Africa but not due to any security threat in India this time around.

    In fact I'm expecting the third Champions League to be held in Australia. Maybe they might even consider New Zealand co-hosting the event (even though they weren't a founding member) because then there will be three (perhaps four by that time) host teams and more home support which will mean larger crowds.