County news November 4, 2013

Hales given IPL green light

ESPNcricinfo staff

England batsman Alex Hales has been cleared to play in the Indian Premier League after extending his contract with Nottinghamshire until 2016. According to the new deal, Hales will be granted time off to play in the next three seasons of the IPL, which clashes with the first few weeks of the county season, subject to him securing a contract in excess of $400,000 per year.

Hales, who has played 21 T20 internationals, is currently the top-ranked batsman in the ICC T20 rankings. Samit Patel has also been granted permission to enter the auctions next year and will be given a similar exemption if he also secures a top-bracket deal.

Hales expressed his happiness on reaching the agreement and said he was looking forward to the three T20s against Australia after the Ashes. "I'm pleased to have come to an agreement with Notts because I want to spend my entire career here and I hope that will happen now that I've been given the opportunity to enter the auction," he said.

"I'm not aware of specific interest from any given IPL franchise but I'm focused on performing well in the Big Bash because there are a lot of eyes on that tournament. I'm hoping to be involved in the Twenty20 matches between England and Australia which I hope can give me a platform to demonstrate my skills and stir interest from IPL teams."

Hales also said he considered focusing only on T20s after struggling for form in the County Championship this year. "Last season was tough for me because I was sky high in two formats and at rock bottom with the red ball," he said. "It did cross my mind to go freelance and focus on Twenty20 full time but I've had time to think and I'm still driven to do well in four-day cricket and to break into England's one-day set-up."

Nottinghamshire's director of cricket, Mick Newell, said it was important for them to strike a balance between Hales' opportunity to earn a substantial amount of money and the team's needs. "We were very keen to secure an extended commitment from Alex, he was understandably keen to enter the IPL auction and there was a mutual will to find a compromise that we could all live with," Newell said.

"It's hard for us to deny an individual the opportunity to earn life-changing amounts of money but the team also has to be considered so it made sense to allow him to enter the auction to see if there is sufficient interest in his services to secure a high-value contract."

Hales will depart for Australia early next month for a stint with Adelaide Strikers in the BBL. Nottinghamshire hope to sign an established batsman as cover for Hales for the opening weeks of the domestic season, while discussions with Michael Lumb, Hales' England opening partner in T20 and another who has expressed ambitions to play in the IPL again, are ongoing.

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • John on November 7, 2013, 19:19 GMT

    @ SirViv1973 on (November 6, 2013, 22:13 GMT) I think Jos himself would love the megabucks and fame he might get from IPL but I'm not sure how many WK batsmen positions are available and also it will kind of contradict what he said about playing for Eng being the most important thing - esp if he plays as an outfielder Personally - esp now as it wouldn't be Somerset losing his services - I think now would be an ideal time for him to go as he will get invaulable experience over there and he's not ready for England in the longer form yet - and if he gets into that position it's unlikely it'll be next summer. Jos should be a big part of Eng's SF plans and I think next year would be an ideal time for him to do IPL

  • Dummy4 on November 7, 2013, 3:11 GMT

    Though Hales is a showstopper in the T20 format, I dont see many takers for him in next year's auction unless we have a replacement team for Pune. Lots of players will be back in the auction pool and given Hales's limited IPL experience if any, he might not be preferred over the likes of Steven Smith and Luke Wright.

    I would love to see Hales open for Kings XI Punjab filling in for Adam Gilchrist. I feel thats the only team which desperately needs a world class opener with the current team set up.

    Rajasthan can use him instead of Rahul Dravid as well. Mumbai may have Rohit move up to open with Dwayne Smith. Chennai have the Big Huss :) - all viable only if the current players are not lost to the auction.

  • Dean on November 6, 2013, 22:13 GMT

    @JG, I agree that Butler has what it takes to be a big success in the IPL & I think he would be of interest to certain franchises. However I don't think he will be interested in the IPL at this stage of his career. I think the move to Lancs shows that he has serious aspirations to challenge Prior for the keeper.batsman role in the test side. To do this he needs to be playing FC cricket and improving his batting & keeping.

  • John on November 6, 2013, 20:01 GMT

    @Dark_Harlequin on (November 6, 2013, 15:32 GMT) Not sure if Hales will even sell. It's one of those where he could go for silly money or could even go unsold - due to maybe unfamiliarity to IPL franchises etc.

    The only problem I could foresee for Notts is if one of their key CC wants to go to the IPL. I guess that's why they've put the high base price down so that the likelihood is slim (unlike the man himself) if say Patel wanted to go and an IPL franchise met the asking price Notts would be well compensated

  • Anupam on November 6, 2013, 19:28 GMT

    I think Hales needs a good coach who will encourage him to become the Opening KP. If Hales has a wish to play tests for ENG, they kindly play 1 or 2 seasons of IPL. He is like young Watson, KP. Punter encourages Watto.ECB Just take care of your World class talent Hales otherwise POMS will loss a talent.

  • John on November 6, 2013, 16:34 GMT

    @Dark_Harlequin on (November 6, 2013, 15:32 GMT) Pretty much agree with you although I'm not sure he will go for alot despite his record. I mean he could go for silly money but he may also go unsold - due ti him maybe not being that familiar to Indian fans. The one problem (if it is a problem) I see is that while Hales is no great loss to the Notts CC team , what happens if a player Notts consider key to their CC plans wants to go? I suppose they have to let any player who has an interest put his name forward or it'll cause loads of resentment issues. Maybe they've thought this through and put a base price of 400k down for anyone who wants to go , knowing that the likelihood of them being picked up is remote and if they are picked up at that price they will be well compensated

  • GARY on November 6, 2013, 16:32 GMT

    @JG2704 I think the difference between Swann & Hales circumstances is Hales will be able to play the whole IPL, Swann was only ever able to play part of it. Still agree though that it surprised me he never got picked up even for half the IPL, he's an excellent T20 bowler.

  • Owen on November 6, 2013, 15:32 GMT

    This is probably win-win for Notts and Hales. If picked, Hales can make a bit of pocket money Notts will take a slice of that to pay for a seasoned pro for the red ball games which Hales has been useless at anyway!

    I reckon he will go for a lot. The BCCI will make sure of that, because if Hales goes for a lot then there is more incentive for other English players to put their names forward in future seasons.

  • Android on November 6, 2013, 14:09 GMT

    Hales should be sold to DD or KXIP.

  • Android on November 6, 2013, 14:05 GMT

    Luck will be there with all the teams in the auction.AD Hales is like gold for any team.

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