Indian Premier League March 1, 2008

Next IPL season could see England players - Modi

Cricinfo staff

Lalit Modi doesn't want counties to sign players who participate in the unofficial Indian Cricket League © AFP

IPL commissioner Lalit Modi will stand by an "informal understanding" with the ECB that keeps England players out of the IPL for the first season as it clashes with the county season. However, he has warned things could be different in the future.

"I know a lot of our owners are in touch with the English players," he told the Daily Telegraph. "I know that the players' agents have been in touch with me, and I've been telling them we cannot do anything for the moment. After this season, it will be more difficult to do that."

Modi had earlier suggested that the dates for future IPL events could be altered to ensure that it doesn't overlap with the English county season to allow England players to be accommodated.

In exchange for ensuring England players are out-of-bounds to franchise owners in the first season, Modi wants the counties to keep out any player connected with the unofficial Indian Cricket League.

"We accept that people are committed to certain pre-existing contracts, but it's not acceptable for any county to knowingly sign an ICL player," he said. "They need to keep to that understanding, otherwise the trickle-down effect is that none of the English counties could end up being invited to the Champions Twenty20 Trophy in the autumn."

Modi's comments come a day after England batsman Kevin Pietersen insisted that no amount of money will tempt him into joining the IPL and said he preferred to focus on his England career.