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Johnson opts out of the IPL

Australia fast bowler Mitchell Johnson has opted out of Indian Premier League and a possible $1.5 million (Rs 7 crore) income as he fears playing in the Twenty20 event may lead to injury and burnt out, his manager said.

cricket Updated: Dec 22, 2010 00:08 IST

Australia fast bowler Mitchell Johnson has opted out of Indian Premier League and a possible $1.5 million (Rs 7 crore) income as he fears playing in the Twenty20 event may lead to injury and burnt out, his manager said.

The names of Johnson and Australian captain Ricky Ponting and Michael Clarke were not among the 416 released for next month's player auction in Bangalore.

The resurgent Johnson, who last week bowled Australia to victory in Perth, has turned his back on the fourth edition of the IPL, which starts in April, days after the World Cup, in a bid to prolong his international career.

According to reports, Johnson could have commanded a price tag of about $500,000 (Rs 2.25 crore) a year had he been available for the auction to be held on January 8 and 9.

Players sold at the auction are given three-year deals, but IPL franchises have the option of severing contracts after two years due to performance concerns or injury.

"We want to manage his career so he can continue to play on at the elite level for six, seven, eight more years. We don't want him to be burnt out by overcooking himself. We don't see how that will be aided by playing too much cricket and playing IPL is too much cricket.

"It's also a long time from home, and they get precious little time at home," said Johnson's manager Sam Halvorsen.

"When he's not playing cricket he's working extremely hard in the gym to ensure his core strength is right where it needs to be to enable him to bowl the way he bowls," Halvorsen said on Tuesday.