Some elite Australian cricketers will be forced to miss the entire 2019 IPL – Indian Premier League.

Melbourne, November 15: Cricket Australia (CA), today, announced that cricketers who want to play in the IPL must receive special permission of CA and the board.

The 12th edition of the lucrative Twenty20 league will be played between March 29 and May 19. The season was brought forward to avoid clash with the 50-overs World Cup, beginning May 30 in England.

The governing body of CA has laid out a list of guidelines for its players in a move to prioritize the domestic first class competition, Sheffield Shield and the national team’s interests.

Any player selected in Australia’s squad for the World Cup would have to attend a training camp in early May and play warm-up matches, which would be the tail-end of the IPL.

CA said it would also bar any players in the Sheffield Shield final, scheduled for late March, from playing in the IPL until after the Shield decider.

 “It is a difficult period with the IPL being brought forward to accommodate the Cricket World Cup, and overlapping our domestic season,” CA’s Belinda Clark said.

“We are committed to respecting the position of the Sheffield Shield, while ensuring Australia’s World Cup squad is well prepared for this critical world event, while also ensuring those that are fit to play have opportunity to participate in the IPL.

“While this is no easy feat, I think we have managed a reasonable balance that will enable the players to consider their options and choose what is right for them and their respective teams.”

Some elite Australian cricketers will be forced to miss the entire 2019 Indian Premier League and the issue can become a point of conflict between CA and the Australian Cricketers Association (ACA).

After the tensions from the penalties handed from the Cape Town episode; and the strenuous negotiations for players’ collective bargaining agreement; the CA and ACA relationship has suffered a tumultuous and significant stress.

The ACA’s general manager of cricket operations and player relations Brendan Drawl said in a statement, “Australian players will always prioritise representing their country”.

Opening bowler Mitchell Starc said that he would choose country over IPL commitments.

Concerns about Starc’s workload have forced him to consider about how much cricket is too much. He was an expensive signing for the Kolkata Knight Riders in the IPL last season but could not play due to injury.

But with the IPL player auction set for December, the uncertainty due to CA’s new protocol is sure to unsettle some of the biggest in cricket.

Fast bowler Pat Cummins had reportedly been angling for a long-term CA contract to offset any financial disadvantage incurred due to injury acquired while playing for Australia or having to forgo IPL cricket because of CA contractual commitments.

Cricket Australia has a roster of players who are predominantly on 12-month deals.

With a World Cup and an Ashes campaign running back to back next year, Drawl alluded to the unique circumstances and hinted to this as a once-off arrangement.

“The typical April/May leave period is an important time for players at the end of and Australian summer, allowing them to ply their craft in the IPL if they choose.

“It will be important to return to this in the future”.

Clark added that meanwhile it was important to “focus on match readiness and the health of our players.”

Australia is also scheduled to play a one-day series against Pakistan that could overlap with the start of the IPL.

Interim performance manager, Belinda Clark, said that “it is important the players understand our position in advance, so they have the clarity they need to make personal decisions.”

Raj Kumar –with agencies

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