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Australia wanting their players to skip IPL is a shame

Any board that chains up their cricketers are destroyers of cricket’s glory

Gulf News

It was shocking to learn that a cricket board is tempting their players with more money so they do not play in a popular tournament. Cricket Australia’s offer of more money to their players to skip the Indian Premier League (IPL) is indeed a shame.

Any cricket board that tries to keep their players away from millions of cricket lovers should ask themselves whether they are really a body meant to promote the game and their players. Cricket Australia should know that IPL will go on despite the Aussies because it is an event that has already been established as the best among the Twenty20 leagues in the world.

Years ago when West Indies lost their great players, many felt that the World Cup would never be the same again. But it turned out that the absence of those legends was never felt and it did not lower the standard of the competition too.

This does not mean that I support the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI)’s decision to prevent Pakistan players from playing in the IPL. BCCI too does not permit Indian players to play in any other league around the world. It is unfortunate that cricket boards are infested with administrators who do not think of fans waiting to watch the best players in action. Be it India or Australia, a cricket board that chains up their players are destroyers of cricket’s glory.

It’s time cricketers unite and fight for their rights to play in any tournament of their choice.

The two editions of the Pakistan Super League have been successful and very enjoyable. There was never a mention that the league would have been more attractive had Indian players played as well. Similarly, Australian players will also not be discussed if Cricket Australia stops their players from playing IPL.

Australia may well be aware that attractive Twenty20 players are emerging from Afghanistan and the focus could shift to them. Rashid Khan has proved to be a better spinner than those from Test-playing nations.

It’s a shame that Cricket Australia will pay Aussie players more money only if they do not play in the IPL. For the glory that their players have brought to their country, they deserve that money irrespective of whether they play in the IPL or not.

Australia will achieve nothing by holding back their players. In fact the IPL has helped the Australian players get accustomed to Indian wickets and conditions. All cricket boards should let their players participate in any tournament as long as there is no burnout.

The lifespan of a cricketer is short, and preventing them from deriving the joy of playing in front of a packed stadium by hanging a carrot is actually squashing the values of a cricketer.