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New Zealand players could miss first Test in England

Sidharth Monga

June 2, 2012

Comments: 84 | Text size: A | A

Brendon McCullum added 99 for the first wicket with Gautam Gambhir, Kolkata Knight Riders v Chennai Super Kings, IPL, Kolkata, May 14, 2012
Brendon McCullum is one of the few New Zealand Test starters who have IPL contracts © AFP

New Zealand are headed towards fielding a second-string side in their first Test against England next year after their board couldn't convince the ECB to schedule the series at a time not coinciding with the IPL. It's a predicament not one of the parties could have helped. The New Zealand players earn more in one week of IPL than they do from their annual NZC contracts, which is why they are entitled to five weeks of IPL, which pays NZC 10% of the players' salary, effectively to make them available. However, NZC is also bound by the ICC Future Tours Programme (FTP), and ECB by its own commercial understanding with its partners.

Rough calculations, says NZC Players' Association chief Heath Mills, suggest New Zealand's IPL players will make it to England only on the eve of the first Test if they play their five weeks' allocation of IPL. Of the eight New Zealanders in the IPL, four are Test starters, and Nathan McCullum and James Franklin are not too far. Jesse Ryder has avoided a contract this year, and Scott Styris has retired. New Zealand fans are not quite holding their breath over the choice the players will make: the last time the players chose country over club, back in 2009, they made no guarantees of a similar decision in the future. Mills says he will be surprised if "most of the players didn't play the IPL".

That standoff back then led to the introduction of the five-weeks clause in future contracts, but NZC didn't guarantee them a clear window for the IPL every year, especially during years the team was due to tour England. "Our understanding was that the guys can take five weeks leave, and that NZC will endeavour to make sure there was no international cricket during that period," Mills said. "However, they did note that it may not be as easy to ensure our players could play the whole IPL when we toured England.

"They made a commitment to us that they will work with the ECB to try and get the dates of our English tour after the IPL if possible. Clearly those discussions haven't reached an outcome that New Zealand players or the players here were hoping. England don't want to move any cricket around the IPL. That's their right, and their choice. So we need to live with that."

"Living with that" will mean further devaluation of international cricket: New Zealand will be weak, England will not be tested properly, and the biggest losers perhaps will be the English public going to the Tests.

"As I do my maths at the moment, if the IPL starts on the 7th of April, as it typically does, then our guys will obviously have five weeks of the IPL, and they will then arrive on the eve of the first Test, which is scheduled for the 16th of May. Which means we will need to work this through with the NZC and the players concerned," Mills said. "If NZC feel that's not enough preparation, they may look to take other players to play that first Test match and have the IPL guys play the second Test. It's certainly unfortunate and far from ideal."

The biggest concern with the way things stand right now is that they affect smaller teams - the likes of New Zealand and West Indies - the most. The big four - India, Australia, England and South Africa - who actually dominate the decision making feel no tangible pinch from the clash between IPL and international cricket. Not least because they can afford to pay their cricketers enough to keep them away from outside lure.

"Our senior players are earning over a million dollars playing in the IPL," Mills said. "Effectively it comes to 200,000 dollars a week. So each week they are not at the IPL, they lose more than the initial contracts here in New Zealand, which I think other people don't realise. New Zealand players earn a couple of hundred thousand dollars a year whereas players from England, Australia and the bigger countries earn a couple of million dollars a year with the initial contract."

Mills said the cricket administrators needed to do more than just saying that Test cricket is the prime format. "I think from a holistic point of view this is not the answer for international cricket," he said. "Clearly if you haven't got your best players playing for your country, we can no longer say international cricket is the best playing the best. Because it isn't. The day the international cricket is not about best players against best players, we have a problem, and we need to discuss it. We need to find a better outcome."

An official window for IPL could be one solution, Mills said. But when suggested there might be no end to tournaments' asking for a window if a precedent is set, Mills said the IPL had a much bigger impact than even the Champions League Twenty20, which is owned by just India, Australia and South Africa and doesn't equate to the world game.

Sidharth Monga is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

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Posted by 2929paul on (June 4, 2012, 8:21 GMT)

The ECB's decision is based entirely on money. Just as with the IPL, the ECB relies massively on sale of the broadcasting rights and in the UK, Sky bought these for £260m back in January, until 2017. As a result, it is Sky who determine when and how often cricket in this country should be played. Hence the spurious ODIs against Australia this summer and international fixtures running from the beginning of May to the end of September when they used to run from June to August.

Posted by IndiaNumeroUno on (June 4, 2012, 8:15 GMT)

@Crapathian: "truer form of the game.."... looks like a big chip on the shoulder than anything else... all this talk of "truer form" will vanish when england slip below #4 in a years time... :))

Posted by IndiaNumeroUno on (June 4, 2012, 8:04 GMT)

@Slogger_John:"Whilst many countries have the luxury of being able to schedule games at any time of the year, England are limited to April-September"

Who are you kidding?!... it rains all day till May, then some in June (then some more in July/Aug/Sep/Oct...).

Posted by ChrisPerera on (June 4, 2012, 4:03 GMT)

I think ICC must intervene and get Indian Cricket Board to schedule IPL matches to minimize overseas players effecting playing for their country. In the mean time all other Cricket Boards must be flexible in scheduling international tournaments.

Posted by serious-am-i on (June 3, 2012, 17:44 GMT)

@Slogger_John: If IPL is scheduled in Jan/Feb no one would watch it, more over its winter season.. With the dew factor it will be impossible to have day and night games, they will be playing in wet grounds instead of dry fields.. Students do have to study and exams fall in March/April so the interest in watching the games would be very minimal. Parents wouldn't allow kids to watch the game and they will not be in a position to watch it either because it could be distraction to their children. The current schedule is planned in such a way that kids are totally free because of their summer holidays.

Posted by torsha on (June 3, 2012, 17:19 GMT)

ECB has problem with IPL and Indian board. Why they wanna schedule the matches when IPL is going? You have seen what KP has done. You could see the same situation when WI players were in IPL this time around and also England are winning without top players from opposite sides (It could be their tactics) and then complaining about IPL. I know country should always come first but you can not put matches intentionally during the time of IPL and then make a big issue out of it. No other boards do that.

Posted by YS_USA on (June 3, 2012, 15:09 GMT)

Why England plays tests with NZ and WI during May? Let them play with Aus during May and NZ after the IPL. 23 Aussuies play in IPL, so a few less will play in IPL and Pakistanis can replace them.

Posted by Slogger_John on (June 3, 2012, 14:03 GMT)

All the comments about the ECB being pig-headed, jealous etc. are ridiculous and show a complete lack of thought. Consider one simple fact - it is impossible to play cricket all year round in England. Whilst many countries have the luxury of being able to schedule games at any time of the year, England are limited to April-September, and some would suggest that is too long a season. If the IPL is so important why can that not be played in Jan/Feb? Or would that impact too much on the scheduling of pointless 7 matches ODI series that seem to be so in vogue at the moment?

Posted by Lmaotsetung on (June 3, 2012, 13:21 GMT)

@ IndiaNumeroUno - England have no problem with the IPL. They'll do their thing just as India will do their thing. ECB's contract with Sky pays them enough to have a Performance Program as well as a well funded Lions squad, some trickle down money to the counties plus all the players' salaries. If you read the article, it's the smaller countries like West Indies, New Zealand, and Sri Lanka who suffers. They are caught between a rock and a hard place and there is nothing they can do. Like I mentioned earlier, looks like more teams will send second string players when they tour England in April/May and most likely it's the three mentioned above. At least Sri Lanka just toured Eng last year so they don't need to deal with it for the next few years which by that time the Sangakara and Mahela of SL cricket should be retired or playing IPL only like Gilchrist/Warne and Co.

Posted by   on (June 3, 2012, 13:06 GMT)

With the minimum wages Test players make ...i would agree with NZ players to choose IPL over Eng. Tour. IPL has its advantages and Disadvantages.

Posted by Lord_Dravid on (June 3, 2012, 12:44 GMT)

no other board seems to have an issue with IPL except england lol ..are they hating and are jealous? i wonder...

Posted by   on (June 3, 2012, 11:36 GMT)

The IPL will never mean anything in England. Not because there are no English players involved but because we have no affinity to any of the teams. Here, we follow our own county but also take an interest in those counties results that will affect our own team's (as we do football).

The IPL will also whither eventually. Once the current players involved have rtired, who is thre to replace them? You can only hone your skill by playing test cricket, which will also mak your name. Would IPL have wantef Pietersen if he played just county cricket? Would they have even heard of him? The IPL want the 'big' names but without Tst cricket there will be none.

Posted by   on (June 3, 2012, 11:10 GMT)

@fatboyscanbat...I was suggesting what others have...a week later and you would have a full strength team from NZ....hell West Indies may of been able to get Gayle to come back to test cricket if it had been delayed a couple of weeks.

Australia, India, and the English can afford to pay money that will keep players choosing country over club. NZ has lost a lot of key players due to not being able to pay them Bond, Vincent, Adams, Marshall...Vettori also. These guys lives are cricket...they need to earn an income from it for their families. So many arrogant people are saying country before club....but if you put your families welfare on the line...what would you choose.

Posted by bobmartin on (June 3, 2012, 10:46 GMT)

@Chetan Asher ... Well if the "gentlemanly" IPL stopped requiring NOC's, then I'm sure the individual countries with player contracts would probably insert a clause in tthose contracts restricting players to a certain number of IPL matches so as to ensure the had a first choice squad available for test matches. But all this kerfuffle about IPL clashing with tests makes a mockery of those who are saying IPL has no effect on tests... It quite clearly does and this proves it.

Posted by   on (June 3, 2012, 9:20 GMT)

Why can't the Kiwi players just play for some of the IPL like KP and Michael Clarke both did? Surely they could miss a couple of games towards the end of the tournament and still make a fair amount of money?

Posted by Lmaotsetung on (June 3, 2012, 9:13 GMT)

Why should ICC find space for IPL? It's a DOMESTIC league and thus a BCCI issue. If the ICC find space for IPL then what about the Big Bash? Maybe ICC should find space for the Big Bash too so players can play there and not miss their country's tour of Australia in Dec/Jan. And maybe in the future ECB might go the franchise route and have something similar in say September then what? Where does it stop?

Posted by fanofteamindia on (June 3, 2012, 9:03 GMT)

Now why can't the ECB schedule the bigger series first?? that is with south africa first and westindies afterwards..or the Ashes first??Why do they want to put the smaller boards under pressure?? It is ECb's fault the situation we are in today. Do they expect BCCI to postpone IPL for their home summer. If this continues, England cricket is going to get doomed.

Posted by Tweaky on (June 3, 2012, 8:01 GMT)

I dont see why england needs to be so pig-headed about all this, all they need to do is just postpone the first test by a week! Am sure even the broadcaster will agree to it, since it will be mean better quality cricket (though result may be foregone) and better viewership. Its unfortunate that cricket board of countries like NZ and WI are put in such unfortunate situation, it is hardly their fault.

Posted by   on (June 3, 2012, 7:28 GMT)

IPL is paying International Cricketers some very good money. IPL management is stupidly trying to be gentlemanly, requiring NOC from the player's home board. ECB is openly abusing this gentlemanliness by insisting on having at least some Intl. cricket (specifically with smaller countries like WI / NZ / BD). My personal recommendation to IPL management - do away with the need for NOC from the home boards. Let's see how England schedule Intl. matches against WI when Peterson, Broad, Anderson, Prior et al have an IPL contract that ECB cannot veto. ECB who is abusing the gentlemanliness of IPL management by using veto on their own players & creating self Vs country arguments by bullying smaller boards simply to satisfy their own EGO will then come to their senses.

Posted by IndiaNumeroUno on (June 3, 2012, 7:21 GMT)

"England don't want to move any cricket around the IPL"... well... deal with the consequences then!

IPL is here to stay and is growing bigger every year, so instead of trying to whinge and being a hurdle, its in your best interest to contribute, participate and reap the benefits.

Posted by   on (June 3, 2012, 6:09 GMT)


Posted by 200ondebut on (June 3, 2012, 5:49 GMT)

IPL is a great tournament - now they have sorted the pitches out we have seen some brilliant games. Through no fault of it's own it is though degrading international cricket - because idiots like Giles Clarke won't give it it's own space. The solution is to find a space for it in the ICC calendar. Both the ICC and the IPL will have to concede ground for this to happen.

Posted by Funky_Claude on (June 3, 2012, 5:32 GMT)

A second string NZ team probably will perform better than the !st eleven anyway!!! Bring it on!

Posted by kiwicricketnut on (June 3, 2012, 5:29 GMT)

@ SanjeevAkki Getting rid of lower ranked teams test matches would be a huge mistake no matter how popular T20 gets. It was only 10 years or so ago that NewZealand was ranked the 2nd best test nation ahead of all the powerhouses of world cricket except Aussie, under John Wright i thought we could climb into that top 4 again now he's gone im not so sure but give us "minnows" a fair go with equal oppotuniity and we could upset some so called better teams, especially teams like India who don't travel well, getting rid of us is not the answer.

Posted by Alexk400 on (June 3, 2012, 5:15 GMT)

People can't deny players making money. Playing international for a country, who makes the money? Boards and its members. Players gets peanuts. IPL or any other tournament that can gve more money to just play is good.

Posted by CricFan78 on (June 3, 2012, 5:10 GMT)

There is no bigger farce than playing Tests in England during May. There is only going to be one result so whats the point of wasting 5 days ?

Posted by fatier on (June 3, 2012, 5:09 GMT)

@Paul Rone-Clarke I agree with you.Ipl is a bad choice and it is nearing its doom.I will not be surprised if it becomes unpopular.I actually enjoy Friends life T20 more than IPL

Posted by fatier on (June 3, 2012, 5:04 GMT)

Glenn Linardon I agree with what you are saying.....

Posted by Just_love_it on (June 3, 2012, 4:42 GMT)

What's so BIG deal and hard to understand ?? They all r professional cricketers, they have limited time window to make money like any other athlete..they dont have much of other skills to make money once they retire....So what's so wrong if they try to make some money while they can in IPL ? y don't ICC just make a window for IPL so once and all this problem will be solved. Most of commentators who r against IPL what would YOU choose if u can earn same money in few weeks or same money by working all year around IN YOUR PROFESSION !?

Posted by Nadeem1976 on (June 3, 2012, 2:08 GMT)

I knew that one day IPL will become issue for international players, that's why i call it International Premiere League. NZ should go ahead and play with B team because in that way ECB will understand and ICC will understand when no body watch Eng vs NZ test series with interest. That will open ICC eyes.

Posted by Lmaotsetung on (June 3, 2012, 2:07 GMT)

Both sides can argue til the are blue in the face, it won't change a thing. Both sides have valid arguements. ECB has contractual agreement with Sky to host 7 test matches per English summer. Without Sky TV contract English cricket would not be where they are today. Unfotunately it's the minnows who suffer as they are usually the appetizer to the main course which comprises Aus/Ind/SA in the middle of summer. England players who play all 3 formats won't have anytime off til Feb of next year and they don't play in the IPL. On the other hand I don't blame players for choosing money over country but the IPL could do with some scaling down but unfortunately money talk BS walks so it aint happening and so every other test nations who is not Ind/Aus/SA who tours Eng will have to bring a second string squad from now on.

Posted by R.Taylor13 on (June 3, 2012, 1:17 GMT)

Well, as if New Zealand cricket didn't need any more set backs, especially against a team of England's caliber, now we have lost out best players for the tour.

New Zealand players, show your national pride and play for the Black Caps, otherwise we're going to get absolutely humiliated.

Posted by Carpathian on (June 3, 2012, 0:48 GMT)

The 'Indian' Premier League is a domestic tournament, let's not forget that. All these 'IPL' devotees seem quite happy for international cricket to wither on the vine, so they watch a few hours of slogging in the service of TV revenue; meanwhile they add snide remarks about batsmen who apply themselves in truer forms of the game. I don't blame players from, say, NZ or Windies, choosing to supplement their lesser home contracts with Indian Premier League pay packets, but nor do I think 20/20 is good for cricket.

Posted by Patchmaster on (June 3, 2012, 0:29 GMT)

NZ players should be ashamed. As an NZ supporter, it's so frustrating to see dollar signs in the eyes of NZ players. When they're grey and old, and look back at their careers, they'll wished they'd tested them selves in the greatest arena, against the best players, because test cricket is exactly that. IPL is poor bowling, awful fielding an easy batting, which no one ever remembers.............people remember test greats, great test performances and great test moments.

Posted by FatBoysCanBat on (June 3, 2012, 0:21 GMT)

@Hayden Field: Your idea about World cricket paying players to play international seems feasible. However your comment about England getting weaker oppostition to stay #1 is way off. England played India last year [who were #2 at the time], they play South Africa this year [who are currently #2], and then a series in India before playing New Zealand away then home. The England schedule [and every other country's schedule] is built from the future tours programme...England last played New Zealand in 2008 which was away and home and before this it was 2002-03 which was away and home. What I can gather from the future tours programme is that every country must play every other other country both home and away every 4-5 years.

Posted by FatBoysCanBat on (June 3, 2012, 0:20 GMT)

As a New Zealander I'm disappointed to hear that we might string a second XI together for the first Test and hope that the likes of McCullum, Vettori, and Taylor put their country - who got them into the position to earn the IPL contract - before the IPL. If this doesn't happen then it will be interesting to see how good players like Kitchen, Nethula, Latham and Henry go in a Test match against the most professional team in cricket.

Posted by   on (June 3, 2012, 0:12 GMT)

Good article but to suggest Nathan McCullum will ever even be considered to play test cricket is a joke. This only affects 4-5 guys and I can see Taylor, McCullum and Vettori being there for the first test regardless. They have pride for NZ and I can see them giving up some mega bucks to be there

Posted by   on (June 2, 2012, 23:39 GMT)

Blaming everything on IPL is the trend today just as DRS inclusion. End of the day, the hoopla is driven by numbers of money. I might love world peace and justice but do I have the resources in hand to make it happen ? Running a company is easier said than done. Profitability is the key and is often a culmination of the right thing to do. If IPL is so bad for sanctity and purity of cricket, let me ask you this - are you ready to pay the players that play for minnows?

Posted by   on (June 2, 2012, 23:03 GMT)

i think that ecb is correct ipl is newzeland's problem not ecb's

Posted by   on (June 2, 2012, 23:03 GMT)

@Paul Rone-Clarke Hey mate. I live in England and I know how popular cricket is in here and there is no surprise in the ITV rating. Cricket in England is always about test cricket and thats why its never going to have a huge fanbase. Who cares if IPL is not famous in UK or outside India as long as the ppl back in India watch it, it will have a great rating (1bn ppl in just India alone mate). Also bear in mind that IPL is missing out on many Pakistani and Bangladesih fans atm, which will be soon solved if IPL teams manage to buy more Pakistani and Bangladeshi players.

Posted by ToeCruncher on (June 2, 2012, 22:57 GMT)

The simple fact is that the players are professionals, who earn a living by playing sport. Any cricketer would be foolhardy if they did not take the opportunity the IPL presents. This is not to say that one form of cricket is better than the other; each player's priority should be their profession. If the boards could afford to, and actually did, pay their players the same amount that the IPL provides, then we could have a fair argument about which matches players should play. As it stands, it is comparing apples with oranges.

Posted by yorkslanka on (June 2, 2012, 22:23 GMT)

@ Glenn Linardon- erm how about no? I would much rather watch gayle bat in the IPl that trott bore me silly by scoring 10 runs off seventy balls..poor cricket like that is what is killing tests..

Posted by 512fm on (June 2, 2012, 22:18 GMT)

As a kiwi myself, I feel it will be an absolute disgrace if they choose the IPL over country, I mean wheres the pride? To be perfectly honest though it wouldn't really matter we will probably lose heavily anyway so may as well have guys out there that will give everything for the black cap i.e. Williamson, Guptill, Martin etc.

Posted by   on (June 2, 2012, 21:40 GMT)

Easy answer.....through money making alone we need to look a new cricket entity for International Cricket.

We need to get sponsorship so the McCullums, Gayles, Taylors and Vettoris get paid by World Cricket to play International Cricket rather than IPL. Sometimes big brother needs to look after little brother a little bit better.

In saying this England seems to be playing a card to get them weaker opposition to keep them at the top of the ratings in world cricket. Gayle would of changed the outlook of the Windies series.

Posted by serious-am-i on (June 2, 2012, 21:25 GMT)

@warren: you must be kidding rite ? How can ICC force any country to play some one during a particular point in time ? Each board has a say in it, if they want matches during a period of time or not. India by any means isn't playing the least no.of matches per year so ICC has basically no reason to complain on the no.of matches it plays.

Posted by DaDaL0G on (June 2, 2012, 20:10 GMT)

i Guess Players should pay Respect to their country because they are famous they have IPL contract Due to Their National Side, and their National side must be their first priority no matter how much they are earning from IPL,BPL or anyother domestic event like these their is no importance of money, the important thing is response of spectators whose likeness pushed them to the peak.

Posted by Sanjeevakki on (June 2, 2012, 19:23 GMT)

You like it or Hate it. But one cannot ignore IPL...... And IPL will be better in the coming years....With Uncapped players going into AUCTION in 2013 and Huge AUCTION coming up in 2014.... And there is possiblity of one More team in 2014.... So it will be 10 teams and 94 games in total....... 2 Months of sooper doooper excitementand entertainment..... because the intensity in these matches will be more......... For all the purists out here...... FYI I'm a big follower of good TEST match cricket like ENG vs AUS, IND vs AUS, IND vs ENG, SAF vs AUS, SAF VS ENG....... ICC should lower its ODI cricket and also unwanted test matches including lower ranked teams.........

Posted by   on (June 2, 2012, 18:53 GMT)

In football when country calls you run, that is, when player contracts iwere well written in first place, and funded as a tripartitite relationship btween ICL. BCCI an ICC, then there should be no problems

Posted by CricEshwar on (June 2, 2012, 18:38 GMT)

IPL is just big bucks for the players. There is no commitment required for players to play in the IPL. They are old enough to choose what they want to play. It is just a profession and everyone is interested in bigger pays. Consider the number of high potential individuals who work overseas for a better pay. These guys can contribute a lot to a country than a mere sport can ever will be. Do we have to consider them unpatriotic?

Posted by Shan_Karthic on (June 2, 2012, 18:34 GMT)

Look at the picture without the names: A player (X) from a cash-strapped board (A) earns more than 5 years' salary by playing for 5 weeks in a tournament run by a foreign board (B). Factor that he is not guaranteed to play for 5 years as either form loss or injuries can cut his career short. The cash-strapped board (A), for letting 8 of their players participate, gets a fee worth annual salaries of 4 players (10% * 8 players * 5 weeks); essentially they get 20% of their national team taken care of by the foreign board (B). Board (A) also makes a commitment to its players to let them play for 5 weeks. Now comes another foreign board (M) which 1) does not care about what happens to either A or X or agreements between them, 2) has been able to improve the success of their team by mostly playing at home against weakened sides. Despite request from A, M schedules a series that will violate agreement between A & X & will result in huge loss for both. Who will you blame - A, X, B or M?

Posted by R_U_4_REAL_NICK on (June 2, 2012, 18:19 GMT)

Seems cricket is slowly becoming like football... players go to whoever pays more for them and, more importantly, to them.

Posted by MartinC on (June 2, 2012, 18:00 GMT)

1. For those asking why players are choosing to play in the IPL over Test cricket - its for the money plain and simple. I dont blame the players for this, making up to $1M for few weeks slogging is hard to turn down.

2. For those talking about this being the ECB being jealous or stubborn - no its not. First they have a contractual obligation in their TV contract and second there is the Champions Trophy later in the summer so no room to move the Tests back even if they wanted to.

It will be interesting to see how the IPL develops - I'm not sure it will be able to sustain paying players the amounts they are getting at the moment and sanity will return.

Posted by   on (June 2, 2012, 17:57 GMT)

@Glen Linardon, Well said! I've been saying the same thing, but they won't post my comments. So thanks for speaking for me!

Posted by   on (June 2, 2012, 17:49 GMT)

ECB should just join the commitee with BCCI,SACB,CA so players will play in IPL. Honestly,if English players play in IPL they earn more,and IPL will grow within England.

Posted by No_Chance_pal on (June 2, 2012, 17:43 GMT)

@Vaibav Gupta

In big bash they are not loading 11 foreign stars per side. Even it will affect the australia's schedule or matches.

IPL ruined West indies already, now New Zealand. Srilanka next in line.

Posted by   on (June 2, 2012, 17:29 GMT)

Why doesn't the ICC force India to play tests during the IPL, as New Zealand, West Indies, Sri Lanka and Pakistan are forced to do. Clearly it is unfair to those nations, and it is one of the reasons why England and India have been the top ranked countries during the past couple of years. Money is ruining cricket for the fans, and in the long term the effect will be negative on the game as a whole.

Posted by johnathonjosephs on (June 2, 2012, 17:26 GMT)

ICC really needs to press the IPL to shorten the length of it. Having 3 games played daily is not a bad idea. Yes IPL is fun and gives players money, but in the end, you must remember that International Cricket will always be 10000X more important than IPL. IPL is also notorious for stealing players from being patriots. Notorious examples of these are Malinga and Pietersen. Even last year, the entire Indian Test Team (except for Dravid and Laxman) decided to put IPL before the tour to West Indies.

Posted by Abaa on (June 2, 2012, 17:24 GMT)

@ Glenn Linardon : I'm not a big fan of the IPL. But without being selfish, we need to consider the situation these people are in. They're having the option of making in a week what they can otherwise make in a year. The IPL might not be good for cricket. But it is a haven for cricketers. It is their life and they have the right to make whatever decision they wish to. The best option is to create a window for the IPL. Only for the IPL and not any of the other tournaments like BBL or BPL or SLPL. Because if every country was to have its own tournament, there would be no time for real cricket. But two months set aside for one tournament that is beneficial for cricketers can be thought of. The IPL is a total waste of time from an honest cricketing point of view but if the entertainment quotient and the financial security it can provide to cricketers is considered, it is definitely worth making a provision for.

Posted by RohithMedisetty on (June 2, 2012, 17:06 GMT)

Look at the player's perspective. Fans and cricket boards are not going to be around them helping them out after they retire. The other day I read an article about england's bowler working in a supermarket. They got to secure their future after retirement. Board and fans are not going to provide them money after retirement. If a player thinks playing ipl is better for his future thn so be it. Though it is not the same I do not see football fans whinning about their players playing for different clubs.

Posted by mar2000 on (June 2, 2012, 16:49 GMT)

there is no way this "CLASH" should occur. Better planning is needed so that the game will always have the best players on show .The public is paying "BIG BUCKS"to see the BEST at all times .

Posted by BellCurve on (June 2, 2012, 16:43 GMT)

English viewers are not following the IPL because there are no English-born stars in the IPL. When the next Flintoff comes along and he starts performing in the IPL, the English viewership will grow exponentially. As we all know, cricket is team sport played by individuals. It's part of the appeal. Your team can be losing, but if your hero performs you're still interested. Tendulkar's 100th 100 was a case in point. BTW more to the point of this article, it is highly likely that NZ will have zero IPL regulars in 2013.

Posted by TimelessTests on (June 2, 2012, 16:41 GMT)

Time to end this stranglehold that the bullying IPL is trying to achieve. Players achieve their fame through playing for the national side and, if contracted to their Board, should not be allowed to break this and miss Tests, etc. Ban those flaunting their commitments from international cricket and very soon the IPL will be composed of has-beens and also-rans: a suitable cast to play out the death scenes of this second-rate format of our beautiful game.

Posted by muski on (June 2, 2012, 16:40 GMT)

This is bound to happen. ECB continues to act as though IPL does not exist. KP's exit earlier this week and this news of NZ is not surprising to any of us. If the issue of IPL Window is thrown out of the Window, the FTP will turn out to be a farce. As someone said, a full strength NZ team is no match for the current Eng team. Imagine what a second string side will do. All things in life which are successful and powerful will attract detractors in plenty. IPL is one such thing. Whether it is good or bad for world cricket- it is here to stay. No player is complaining, no commentator is complaining, no sponsor is complaining, no umpire is complaining and no refree is complaining. The Cricket lovers in India are certainly not complaining.

Posted by   on (June 2, 2012, 16:30 GMT)

it's a shame for cricet and Blackcaps fans.

Posted by 2.14istherunrate on (June 2, 2012, 16:08 GMT)

NZ are going to lose v ENG whatever side they turn up with, but if the IPL are not going to honour international Coomitments for players by having let out clauses in contracts for international games and warm ups then it is time for ICC not to recognise IPL. End of story.IPL first off said they would not be standing in the way of International cricket. Whatever the outcome IPL must not take primacy in any way.

Posted by SamRoy on (June 2, 2012, 15:51 GMT)

@Glenn Linardon Then the only people who will make money from it is ECB and CA to some extent. All the rest of the cricket boards will only incur heavy losses. I have an even better idea why don't all professional cricketers become amateurs? Test cricket in most parts is about as popular as County First class cricket in england. Average audience about 500 per match.

Posted by   on (June 2, 2012, 15:39 GMT)

@Glenn Linardon, if IPL is a farce, then whats Big Bash? And why everyone wants to play in IPL if its such a big FARCE ?

Posted by anurag70 on (June 2, 2012, 15:36 GMT)

a big dislike to IPL and those players who wants to play in IPL instead of their country. ideally if there are no Intl matches, then players should move towards IPL

Posted by Muhtasim13 on (June 2, 2012, 15:34 GMT)

this has nothing to do with the ECB's stubbornness. The ICC Champions trophy is scheduled to start right after the Eng-NZ tour. So, there's absolutely no way that the ECB can postpone the start of their series with NZ without jeopardizing the Champions trophy schedule. Seriously people, before bashing the ECB, look at the case with some common sense

Posted by wiseshah on (June 2, 2012, 15:30 GMT)

this is simply not acceptable. NZ lost shane bond, craig mcmillan, lou vincent, several bowlers due to ICL/IPL saga. There should be rule about country first and then other league. Its like cheating their royal fan who roots for the country instead of some cheap league

Posted by KBCA on (June 2, 2012, 15:16 GMT)

Not that NZ would challenge ENG at home anyway.. but why is the ECB the only board scheduling tours during the IPL? They have to see that the poorer countries cant afford to pay their cricketers very much so the players need the IPL to supliment their earnings.

Posted by StarHawk on (June 2, 2012, 15:12 GMT)

@ Glenn, if IPL is an absolute farce, why do all the best players want to play IPL ahead of their national team????

Posted by Bruisers on (June 2, 2012, 15:01 GMT)

@Glenn Linardon - Here is the best idea- Scrap this meaningless series. Even a full strength NZ is no match for England in England.

Posted by   on (June 2, 2012, 14:53 GMT)

Why exactly should the ECB rearrange everything to suit the IPL? The IPL now takes up nearly two months of the English season. Can't see any other board choosing to play around to suit any other country's domestic tournaments.

If the New Zealand players choose money over the Tests, so be it. Given how little they make from the New Zealand board, I can hardly blame them, but they're also choosing to leave the New Zealand side.

Posted by adm21 on (June 2, 2012, 14:41 GMT)

Can't anyone read? It is not stubornness:the article states that the ECB has its own broadcasting contracts to fulfil. If the IPL / other boards want this changed they can just pay the ECB the amount it would take to break its contract with Sky.

Posted by Sinhaya on (June 2, 2012, 14:17 GMT)

Even Sri Lanka will have problems with their West Indies tour in May next year. Hope IPL allows Mahela, Sanga, Dilshan to tour West Indies. I know cant make India unhappy in this game.

Posted by   on (June 2, 2012, 14:13 GMT)

It will be big slap on the face of ECB if NZ send second string for the tour.

Posted by RyanHarrisGreatCricketer on (June 2, 2012, 14:07 GMT)

just because they have agreed to play 5 weeeks ipl does it mean that they will not come back for test cricket? After all dont they have pride?

Posted by TwitterJitter on (June 2, 2012, 13:59 GMT)

There is a simple solution to this. NZC should compensate the players for the losses they incurred foregoing IPL. NZC should secure these funds from ECB to compensate their players for lost income.

Posted by   on (June 2, 2012, 13:52 GMT)

IPL is not big at all outside India. It's on ITV4 in the UK about the smallest of the small stations, It's on in the middle of the afternoon on working days, and not repeated or having highlights in the evening. Indian fans might be under the delusion that IPL is popular world wide. It isn't. Outside of Indian expats it's mostly ignored. 297,000 viewers is was the peak in UK in 2010. It didn't reach 180,000 at all in 2012 and the average was under 150,000. ITV have already said they won't be paying the already very low sum they paid again and expect the figures to be closer to 100,000 average in 2013. Viewing figures dropping by 40% a year. No one will be watching by 2016. So let players do what they want. If they want to end international career by playing foreign domestic cricket - let them. We certainly won't miss them, and the NZ team that tours next year couldn't be much worse than the last lot that Sidebottom of all people routed every match. No loss there. Bye bye Macullum!

Posted by AdrianVanDenStael on (June 2, 2012, 13:14 GMT)

An unsavoury farce; it might make ranking points for England easier, but it's bad for the integrity of the rankings and the integrity of test cricket. 'Of the eight New Zealanders in the IPL, four are Test starters, and Nathan McCullum and James Franklin are not too far.' Far from what, pray tell? Skegness?

Posted by rayfanatics on (June 2, 2012, 13:14 GMT)

Typical English stubbornness. I just shudder to think how their team will fare in ODIs after KP's departure. Still they do not pay heed to the impact of the IPL. Look, I love watching test cricket in England and a week's delay in scheduling their first test of the summer makes just more sense.

Posted by torsha on (June 2, 2012, 12:59 GMT)

Haha, no wonder ECB is just jealous of IPL. Simply put in that way. KP has retired too. ECB's ego is hurting them only.

Posted by   on (June 2, 2012, 12:50 GMT)

Heres a better idea.... how about they scrap that absolute farce they call the IPL and just play Test Cricket.

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