The inaugural Champions League T20 tournament has run into troubled waters with English counties in no mood to oblige BCCI vice-president Lalit Modi’s diktat and leave out players who have been part of the rebel Indian Cricket League (ICL).
In fact, Modi’s warning that counties with ICL players face ouster from the £2.5 million event has enraged clubs here who have struck a belligerent pose, ready to miss out the event starting late September. A spokesman of Lancashire, which has ICL player Lou Vincent in the ranks, told The Times that in the absence of any clear instructions from the England cricket board, the position was quite unclear.
“If it is up to Cricket Australia to come up with rules and regulations, then maybe they would like to get a wiggle on because this thing is about to start. Our priority is winning the Twenty20 Cup, which means picking our strongest team, including ICL players,” he said. “If we get to the final, it will be up to the tournament organisers whether we play in the Champions League. If they do not want to see Andrew Flintoff and James Anderson out there, that is up to them.”
Of the counties, only Essex, Middlesex and Somerset don’t have any ICL players and Modi has already said that teams with ‘rebel’ cricketers would be ousted from the tournament.
Modi’s warning has created a dilemma in county cricket, which features more than 20 rebel players, including Justin Kemp (Kent), Murray Goodwin (Sussex), Andre Adams (Nottinghamshire), Dale Benkenstein (Durham) and Stuart Law (Lancashire).
ECB maintained that Cricket Australia would draft the rules.
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