Allen Stanford, the Antigua-based billionaire, has planned a wealth management programme to assist his Superstars team if they win the US$20 million winner-takes-all match against England on November 1. Stanford said he didn't want to see young players get $1 million and then wind up with nothing in a year from now.
"We're going to work very carefully with them to see that their money is managed properly, that they are not taken advantage of, that they don't get sports agents that come in and have their own self-interests first and the players' second," Stanford told the Barbados-based Nation. "These young kids must have a future beyond cricket in terms of taking that money and living the rest of their lives."
Stanford is investing US$100 million in a series of Twenty20 matches over the next five years - five US$20 million games between England and a Stanford All-Stars XI, drawn from the Caribbean, at his purpose-built ground in Antigua - which could make England and West Indies players among the highest in the game. A 32-member Superstars squad, which includes Chris Gayle, Shivnarine Chanderpaul, Ramnaresh Sarwan and Dwayne Bravo, as well as notable performers from the Stanford Twenty20 domestic tournament, was announced last week.
Stanford said it was a once-in-a-lifetime chance for young players to make a lot of money and he didn't want them to lose the opportunity.
"A lot of people will be coming out of the woodwork who have all kinds of different ideas about how they must spend that money they have just fallen into.
"The parasites that hang onto these guys confuse the intellectual property and the other rights that these athletes have. These young kids don't have the savvy, experience and maturity to understand what they are doing when they sign on the dotted line. They are taken advantage of. That's got to stop."