Jacques Kallis has joined the chorus of international cricketers in urging the ICC to have a separate window for the Indian Premier League (IPL). Kallis felt the players were experiencing an increasing workload and highlighted it as the reason for the lack of allrounders in the game at present.
"If you see the amount of cricket we've been playing there may be even more of a decline [in allrounders]," Kallis said ahead of the first Test against India in Chennai. "There's just too much of workload on the allrounders and they're going to have to come up with some plan to cut it down. Otherwise the allrounders may have to become [solely] Test players or ODI players to cope with the workload. From that point of view, it is sad to see."
Adding to the gruelling schedule will be the inaugural 44-day IPL tournament, set to start on April 18. "It's tough to turn down good money," he said, "and somewhere along the line there is going to be sacrifices having to be made. It will have to be done by individual players. As far as I'm concerned, I still think I've got a good few years left in me and hopefully the IPL will be lucrative.
"It's going to be a tough decision and maybe the ICC will have to integrate the IPL into the international season and make sure that's part of it. Hopefully work around it, still giving the players a break. Maybe they can come up with some formula - limit it to 20-25 ODIs and 14-15 Tests. I don't know the ideal number but maybe someone can work it out."
However, after its meeting in Dubai on March 18, the ICC had made it clear that the Future Tours Programme will not be altered to suit the IPL as neither the league nor the Indian board, which runs it, made such a request.
South Africa's coach Mickey Arthur was the first international coach to suggest something similar last fortnight. "I do think the IPL is good for cricket," he told Cricinfo. "However, there must be a window period for it in the international schedule."
John Dyson, the West Indies coach, had also voiced similar concerns in the wake of the possibility that Chris Gayle, Ramnaresh Sarwan and Shivnarine Chanderpaul would miss the first two home Tests against Australia in order to be available to play for their IPL franchises.