MARK Butcher has confirmed he would be interested in competing in the Indian Cricket League – if an approach was made for his services.
And the Surrey captain believes that the club would not block him playing in the competition, which begins after the English domestic season finishes.
Legendary West Indian batsman Brian Lara has already agreed a deal, reputed to be worth £300,000, to compete in the lucrative tournament, which will initially comprise just six teams, with the victorious side winning a cool $1million.
Butcher is quick to point out that he has not been offered a contract by the ICL – and was bemused when a national newspaper stated he was being targeted.
But he told the South London Press: “If I was approached I’d have to talk to Surrey about it and find out if there were any reasons why I shouldn’t go, or if it would compromise anything here,but if that was not the case I would be very interested.
FIVE WEST Indian cricketers – other than former captain Brian Lara – have been approached by the IndianLeague (ICL) to take part in their inaugural season.
This was revealed by a source close to the West Indies team on Wednesday.
“The ICL has approached five players who are currently on the West Indies team to play in their league,” the source said. “Contracts from the ICL were offered to all and the players are currently looking at the offer.”
The source was, however, quick to add that the players have not yet made a decision as to whether they will take up the offer. It is understood that the Essel Group, the owners of the league, has offered between US$350,000 and US$500,000 to the players as inducement to join the ICL.
Top name players
The ICL has attracted many top name players from around the world and one of the first players to sign was Lara. Last week, it was revealed that Pakistanis Abdul Razzaq, Inzamam-ul-Haq and Mohammad Yousuf have all taken up offers to play in the three-week long Twenty20-styled tourna-ment. Both the Board of Control for Cricket in(BCCI) and the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) have imposed bans on players who take part in the league.
It is understood that the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) has taken no position on the ICL matter because of the fact that no player has approached the regional governing body for approval to participate in the league.
The International Cricket Council (ICC), the sport’s world governing body, has thrown its weight behind the BCCI in the latter’s stand-off with the ICL. The ICC noted that the Indian board was the ‘only recognised body’ to administer the sport in India.
Not a single Indian player is among the 12 in the fray for the ‘2007 Cricketer of the Year’ award, the nominations for which were announced by the International Cricket Council (ICC) here Tuesday.
Overall, Indians have an extremely poor representation among the nominations announced for the eight categories of awards that will be presented in Johannesburg Sep 10.
Only two Indians – pacer Zaheer Khan and leg-spinner Anil Kumble – figure among the 20 nominated for the ‘Test Players of Year’ award while just one – Yuvraj Singh – is among the 19 for the ‘ODI (One-day International) Player of the Year’ prize.
Among the women, two Indians figure among the 13 nominated for the ‘Women Cricketer of the Year’. They are all-rounder Rumeli Dhar and pacer Jhulan Goswami.
No Indian, however, finds a place in three other categories — ‘Emerging Player of Year’, ‘Captain of the Year’ and ‘Umpire of the Year’ awards.
Seven were nominated for the ‘Emerging Player of Year’, two – Mahela Jayawardene and Ricky Ponting — for the ‘Captain of the Year’ and four for the ‘Umpire of the Year’ awards.
‘There is so much great cricket to reflect upon during the voting period,’ said ICC CEO Malcolm Speed while announcing the nominees here.
Australia captain Ponting and his Sri Lanka counterpart Jayawardena have both been nominated in four categories for the annual awards.
Ponting, who secured the Cricketer of the Year and Test Player of the Year awards last year, has once again been named for those categories and also appears among the nominees for the ODI Player and the Captain of the Year awards.
Jayawardena, the 2006 Captain of the Year, has a chance of winning that award again this time and, like Ponting, is also up for consideration in three other individual categories.
Eight other players – West Indies’ Shivnarine Chanderpaul, Australia’s Matthew Hayden, Michael Hussey and Glenn McGrath, Sri Lankan Muttiah Muralidaran, England’s Kevin Pietersen, Shaun Pollock of South Africa and Pakistan’s Mohammad Yousuf – have been short listed for three individual honours.
This year’s awards include eight individual prizes, including a new one for the ‘Associate ODI Player of the Year’. This prize will recognise and reward the efforts in ODIs of the outstanding player from the six countries – Bermuda, Canada , Ireland , Kenya , the Netherlands and Scotland — outside the ICC full members.
The awards also feature a selection of the Test and ODI Teams of the Year and the award to the side that has adhered most to the Spirit of Cricket.
Based on the 12 months between Aug 9, 2006, and Aug 8, 2007, the ICC Awards – presented in association with FICA – will take into account performances by players and officials in this period.
The ICC Awards ceremony is now in its fourth year and this would be the first time the function would be staged in South Africa. Previous ceremonies were held in London (2004), Sydney (2005) and Mumbai (2006).
ICC Awards nominees:
Test Player: Mohammad Asif (Pakistan), Shivnarine Chanderpaul (West Indies), Stuart Clark (Australia), Matthew Hayden (Australia), Michael Hussey (Australia), Mahela Jayawardena (Sri Lanka), Zaheer Khan (India), Anil Kumble (India), Brian Lara (West Indies), Glenn McGrath (Australia), Muttiah Muralitaran (Sri Lanka), Makhaya Ntini (South Africa), Monty Panesar (England), Kevin Pietersen (England), Shaun Pollock (South Africa), Ricky Ponting (Australia), Kumar Sangakkara (Sri Lanka), Ryan Sidebottom (England), Shane Warne (Australia), Mohammad Yousuf (Pakistan)
ODI Player: Shane Bond (New Zealand), Mark Boucher (SA), Nathan Bracken (Aus), Shivnarine Chanderpaul (WI), Stuart Clark (Aus), Michael Clarke (Aus), Matthew Hayden (Aus), Michael Hussey (Aus), Mahela Jayawardena (SL), Jacques Kallis (SA), Brett Lee (Aus), Glenn McGrath (Aus), Muttiah Muralidaran (SL), Jacob Oram (NZ), Kevin Pietersen (Eng), Shaun Pollock (SA), Ricky Ponting (Aus), Yuvraj Singh (Ind), Mohammed Yousuf (Pak)
Emerging Player: Ravinder Bopara (Eng), Shakib Al Hasan (Bangladesh), Mitchell Johnson (Aus), Mushfiqur Rahim (Bang), Shaun Tait (Aus), Ross Taylor (NZ), Chris Tremlett (Eng)
Cricketer of the Year: Shivnarine Chanderpaul (WI), Matthew Hayden (Aus), Michael Hussey (Aus), Mahela Jayawardena (SL), Jacques Kallis (SA), Glenn McGrath (Aus), Muttiah Muralidaran (SL), Kevin Pietersen (Eng), Shaun Pollock (South Africa), Ricky Ponting (Aus), Kumar Sangakkara (SL), Mohammed Yousuf (Pak)
Captain of the Year: Mahela Jayawardene (SL), Ricky Ponting (Aus)
Associate ODI Player of the Year: Ashish Bagai (Canada), Andre Botha (Ireland), John Davison (Can), Trent Johnston (Ire), Dwayne Leverock (Bermuda), Kyle McCallan (Ire), Tanmay Mishra (Kenya), Eoin Morgan (Ire), Ashif Mulla (Can), Niall O’Brien (Ire), Thomas Odoyo (Ken), Peter Ongondo (Ken), Irving Romaine (Ber), Abdool Samad (Can), Ryan Ten Doeschate (the Netherlands), Steve Tikolo (Ken), Hiren Varaiya (Ken), Ryan Watson (Scotland)
Umpire of the Year: Mark Benson (England), Steve Bucknor (West Indies), Daryl Harper (Australia), Simon Taufel (Australia)
Women’s Cricketer of the Year: Caitriona Beggs (Ire), Holly Colvin (Eng), Rumeli Dhar (Ind), Maria Fahey (NZ), Jhulan Goswami (Ind), Ashlyn Kilowan (SA), Johmari Logtenberg (SA), Urooj Mumtaz Khan (Pak), Shelley Nitschke (Aus), Rebecca Rolls (NZ), Sajida Shah (Pak), Lisa Sthalekar (Aus), Claire Taylor (Eng)
Swash-buckling cricketer Virender Sehwag said Wednesday that he would use next month’s Twenty20 World Championship to try and regain his place in the Indian Test and one-day international squads.
‘I have been working hard on my batting skills and my fitness. I have also played some local matches for my employers, and hopefully I will do well at the World Championship in South Africa and get my place back in the Test and ODI teams,’ said Sehwag at a press conference here.
The opening batsman, ignored for the Test and ODI teams currently touring England, said all-rounders stand the biggest chance to succeed in the short and crisp Twenty20 cricket, based on 20 overs-a-side matches.
‘I have observed that players who can bat and bowl have succeeded. We need good all-rounders in Twenty20 cricket,’ Sehwag said on the occasion of the unveiling of the trophy for the Twenty20 World Championship.
The tournament will be held in South Africa Sep 11-24.
Asked for his opinion on a format that suits his hard-hitting batting style, Sehwag felt that Twenty20, the shortest recognised version of international cricket, is great source of entertainment for the public.
‘It’s a new format and I love it. It’s good fun for the public rather than the players. I first played Twenty20 cricket in 2003 when I played county cricket (for Leicestershire),’ he said.
The Indian Cricket League’s (ICL) plans to sign current New Zealand players have been ruined after the country’s board decided it would not release its stars. Stephen Fleming and Shane Bond were linked to the unofficial Twenty20 tournament, but Justin Vaughan, the New Zealand Cricket (NZC) chief executive, said the contest could erode the value of official series.
“We depend upon the value of the media rights associated with official international events to provide a majority of our income,” Vaughan said. “It is therefore in the best interests of New Zealand Cricket not to support unofficial events such as the ICL.” He also has concerns over the proposed Stanford Twenty20 in the West Indies.
Four Pakistani players, including Mohammad Yousuf, have signed for the Indian league, but it has struggled to attract the host of promised big names. Chris Harris and the retired Nathan Astle and Chris Cairns have also been linked to the competition, which has not been sanctioned by the ICC or the BCCI.
Vaughan said no contracted player had asked to appear in the tournament, but the issue was considered carefully and the New Zealand Cricket Players’ Association supported the position in principle. “The proposed rebel league is scheduled to directly conflict with New Zealand’s tour to South Africa as well as the start of our domestic season,” Vaughan said. “We have entered into these contracts in good faith and stand by our players through their contract period. We expect players to treat us the same way.”
Vaughan said all players with provincial deals would also be bound by the ruling. “We’re aware that [ICL] contracts have been offered to some of our players,” he said. “We have made them aware of NZC’s position. Whilst I can understand why these sort of individual offers can be attractive in the twilight of your career, we need to uphold the integrity of our contracts.”
Vaughan said the recent confusion could prompt NZC to look at whether its stars were adequately remunerated. The current system of awarding deals to 20 players – the lowest-ranked receive a base salary of about NZ$45,000 a year – might be reviewed, with the potential for fewer contracts, but at a higher value.
“We can look at the number of contracts – issues like this do make you think about it,” Vaughan said. “We’ve also recently signed a new media rights deal and the players will benefit directly from that.”
The Indian board is reportedly planning a sanctioned Twenty20 contest and Vaughan said it could lead to New Zealand players taking part. “It is too early to discuss details of this,” he said. “Like the ICL, we also need to be careful when considering this proposed competition to ensure participation is in the best interests of NZC. We expect more information to become public in the coming weeks.”
HYDERABAD: The 77th edition of the All India Coromandel King Moin-ud-Dowla Gold Cup invitation cricket tournament will commence from September 2, according to N. Shivlal Yadav, secretary of the Hyderabad Cricket Association.
The championship, to be played on a three-day format (90 overs and 40 overs in each innings), will feature 18 teams and will be organised at six different venues in the City. The final will be at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium (Uppal) from Sept. 18 to 20.
Chennai-based teams like MRF, Chemplast and India Cements, which have been winning the Cup for the last few years, do not figure in the line-up. Commenting on this, Shivlal clarified that the Tamil Nadu Cricket Association has decided to field only one official State team for the championship.
The HCA secretary also said that since the event was an official tournament, there would be no entry for the cricketers who signed up with the Indian Cricket League. A point of interest from the local perspective is the participation of an USA team, sponsored by Kasani Gnaneshwar Mudiraj, MLC, and coached by former India Test star Syed Abid Ali.
M.V. Sridhar, vice-president of HCA, said that in view of the inclement weather prevailing in Hyderabad, the organisers have decided to keep the HMWSSB Grounds (Amberpet) ready as a stand-by venue. There would be a reserve day also for the matches. “HCA is also organising the Level II coaching course of the National Cricket Academy at Rajiv Gandhi Stadium for one week coinciding with this event, under the stewardship of Lalchand Rajput,” Sridhar informed.
The teams which have confirmed participation are: Hyderabad XI, Hyderabad President’s XI, HCA Combined Districts XI, Jharkhand, M.P., Goa, BSNL, Railways, Indian Oil Corporation, Kerala, Saurashtra, Vidarbha, Cricket Association of Bengal, Assam, USA, Tripura and Tamil Nadu.
New Zealand Cricket (NZC) today announced its opposition to a breakaway league planned in India.
NZC chief executive Justin Vaughan said his organisation would not release any of its contracted players to the Indian Cricket League (ICL), which is due to begin a rebel Twenty20 competition in October.
Test captain Stephen Fleming and fast bowler Shane Bond as well as retired allrounders Chris Cairns and Nathan Astle have been linked to the league.
However, Vaughan said no contracted player had approached NZC for a release to participate in the ICL competition.
Former Indian allrounder Kapil Dev is regarded as the brains behind the rebel Twenty20 competition scheduled to start in October which has already signed former West Indies and Pakistan captains Brian Lara and Inzamam-ul Haq.The breakaway league is being bankrolled by media baron Subhash Chandra, who owns India’s largest listed media company.
” … New Zealand Cricket cannot agree to release our contracted players to participate in the ICL.
“We have entered into these contracts in good faith and stand by our players through their contract period. We expect players to treat us the same way.”
Vaughan said the New Zealand Cricket Players’ Association understood and supported NZC’s position in principle.”We value our positive relationship with our players and the Players’ Association and I have communicated with our players to ensure they understand the reason for New Zealand Cricket’s position and why it is in the best interests of the sport.”
He said the proposed league would be an unofficial rebel tournament not sanctioned by either the International Cricket Council or the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI).
“Events such as the ICL could have the potential to compete with official international events and erode their value.
“New Zealand Cricket, and indirectly our professional player group, depends upon the value of the media rights associated with official international events to provide a majority of our income.
“It is therefore in the best interests of New Zealand Cricket not to support unofficial events such as the ICL.”He said the proposed league was scheduled to directly conflict with New Zealand’s tour to South Africa as well as the start of the domestic season.
The BCCI has proposed staging an opposition Twenty20 competition to the rebel event and Vaughan said this might “present opportunities for both NZC and for NZC-contracted players to participate in an endorsed competition”.
He considered it too early to discuss details of this and he expected more information to become public in coming weeks.”