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IPL no guarantee for Australians: CA Chief

James Suutherland refuses to commit Australian participation in the IPL, despite announcing the cancellation of the scheduled Pakistan tour.
AFP | By HT Correspondent, Sydney
UPDATED ON MAR 11, 2008 05:37 PM IST

Cricket Australia refused to say whether players would be free to take part in the Indian Premier League on Tuesday, despite scrapping a tour to Pakistan that clashed with the competition.

The Pakistan tour, which was postponed for security reasons Tuesday, had been due to run until late April, which would have overlapped with the April 18 start of the IPL.

While its delay appeared to free up Test stars with lucrative IPL contracts such as Andrew Symonds and Ricky Ponting to participate in the Twenty20 competition, Cricket Australia (CA) chief executive James Sutherland was non-committal.

"The Indian Premier League is due to commence on April 18, the Australian team is due to arrive in the West Indies for a tour in early May -- so there's a small window of opportunity there for players to perhaps play in IPL," he told reporters.

"But at the same time, we've got this calendar issue where players won't have had much preparation leading into the West Indies tour."

He said the lead-in to the West Indies tour had be be reassessed in light of the decision to not to travel to Pakistan later this month.

"Our coaching staff and team management are now considering what the appropriate lead-in is for the team," he said.

"Really, with the decision being made today we need to do a little bit more to work out exactly what the best preparation for the West Indies tour is going to be."

CA would likely face a major rift with players if it ordered them to forego the huge financial windfalls on offer for participating in even part of the IPL season because it wanted them to prepare for the West Indies tour.

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