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Aussie Pomersbach willing to play IPL for 'free'

Pomersbach is one of four Australian players in line for the second IPL player auction.
AFP | By HT Correspondent, Sydney
UPDATED ON MAR 10, 2008 03:09 PM IST

Fringe Australian player Luke Pomersbach says he is willing to play in the lucrative Indian Premier League for free to compete with the world's leading cricketers.

Pomersbach, who made his international Twenty20 debut for Australia in Perth in December, is one of four Australian players in line to cash in on the second IPL player auction in Mumbai on Tuesday.

The eight IPL franchises have the chance to bolster their playing stocks with the Australian quartet not expected to be encumbered by national duties during the competition starting on April 18.

Team owners reportedly have varying amounts left in their kitties after spending between 3.3 million and 5 million USD at last month's first auction.

Pomersbach, the 23-year-old West Australian left-hander who has scored centuries for WA against South Africa and England touring teams, said he was keen to compete.

"I am pretty excited about it, because I did not think I would have a chance, but I have, and it will be a chance to play with some serious cricketers," Pomersbach said Monday.

"I would be happy to go over for free and play that standard of cricket and cricketers," he said. "I will be able to learn so much from them, but I will take anything I can get."

Pomersbach joins other Australian cricketers -- Brad Hodge, Shane Watson and James Hopes -- in the second draft of players to be auctioned.

The IPL is essentially an Indian Twenty20 domestic competition between eight city teams owned by corporate giants and movie stars who have hired the world's best cricketers at mind-boggling prices.

It is the nearest thing to Fantasy Cricket, and cricketers have been offered huge sums offered to play in the inaugural 44-day, 59-match extravaganza.

But Western Australia coach Tom Moody, who will oversee Mohali in the IPL, said the franchises wouldn't have as much to spend following the large amount of money thrown around at the first auction.

"It would be a positive thing if they do get snapped up, because it is only going to help their game to be involved in a high level competition and surround themselves with international players and learn from them," Moody said.

"But I know a lot of the franchises have had their funds exhausted. There are only a few that have got a few pennies left in the bank so we will see what happens."

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