Australian captain Ricky Ponting fears that scrapping the salary cap of Indian Prmier League franchisees might take away the competitive edge from the exciting Twenty20 tournament.
Ponting has urged IPL bosses not to abolish the $5 million salary cap, else the wealthier owners will run away with all the prized players and cricket's new sensation will lose its competitive flavour.
"I have heard there may be no salary cap, but I am not sure if that will be good for the IPL," Ponting was quoted as saying in Herald Sun.
"The more I have thought about it, it might be detrimental to the whole set-up. We want good, competitive cricket with lots of international players playing good, close games,” he said.
Several top players have reportedly been told that IPL's salary cap will be axed and star performers could expect staggering $14-15 million contracts.
It would create a free market, like soccer's English Premier League, where rich franchises have unlimited buying power and can splurge much more on a player, the report said.
"If they go ahead with no salary cap, a lot of that might go out of the window," Ponting said.
"I really do think they can manage it well and have the IPL as something that is going to help the game, and not just be extra money coming in for the international players," Ponting said.
It remains to be seen whether Ponting's call will influence IPL chairman, Lalit Modi, who has done little to disguise the fact that the salary cap could be axed.
"It has already attracted new audiences to the game. With more audiences you are going to get more participation. With more participation you are going to get a stronger and better game with better players and better athletes. Overall, it should make cricket a better thing," Ponting said.
Ponting's stand will go down well with his Cricket Australia bosses in Melbourne.
There were already fears that skyrocketing IPL payments could encourage Aussies to trade a baggy green cap for an IPL bonanza.
Ponting though reiterated that International Cricket Council should devote a designated window in its calendar for IPL.