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CB introduces unprecedented three-year contracts to protect England’s top cricketers

CB introduces unprecedented three-year contracts to protect England’s top cricketers

CB introduces unprecedented three-year contracts to protect England’s top cricketers

England players

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  • The ECB has introduced three-year contracts for England cricketers.
  • These contracts replace one-year central contracts.
  • Approximately 26 contracts will be offered.
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The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) has introduced unprecedented three-year contracts in an effort to prevent franchise teams from recruiting England’s top cricketers exclusively for T20 leagues around the world.

These contracts replace the previous system of one-year central contracts. This move comes as IPL ownership expands into other T20 leagues, allowing franchises to retain players year-round.

Around 26 contracts have been offered, up from the 18 full and six incremental contracts issued last year. Approximately 20 of these contracts are multi-year deals, with star players like Ben Stokes, Harry Brook, and Mark Wood receiving three-year packages.

Jonny Bairstow is expected to receive a two-year contract, while one-year offers are on the table for players not involved in franchise cricket, such as Jack Leach, and veterans like James Anderson.

The focus on protecting fast bowlers is noticeable, with emerging talents like Josh Tongue and Gus Atkinson, who made their international debuts recently, likely to sign multi-year contracts.

Jofra Archer, 28, may also secure a three-year deal, given his appeal to franchises like the Mumbai Indians. Archer played for MI Cape Town earlier in the year before his IPL season was cut short due to injury.

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England’s players will decide whether to accept these contracts. While the basic pay has been agreed upon, those offered multi-year deals may opt for one-year contracts to have more flexibility.

These contracts, effective from October, mark a significant advancement for the ECB after discussions with the England team. There may be some issues to resolve, and some players may be disappointed not to receive contracts initially. However, overall, this is seen as a positive step, especially for those signing longer-term deals.

“It’s certainly not negative, it kind of gives you a bit of security,” Ben Duckett, who is understood to have been offered a two-year contract, said ahead of England’s second ODI against Ireland. “I think it’s great that they’re offering these contracts.

“The security of players wanting to keep playing for England is perfect. For me the main thing is walking out and representing my country, it’s not really a contract but that’s a bonus.”

The ECB contributed an additional £3.4 million to the pot, and this allowed for the quantity and amount of the individual contracts. Performance rating points were used to divide the pot among the 26 participants. The method assigns points for each of the three formats, ranging from “recognition of extraordinary performance” throughout the previous 12-month cycle to whether a player is likely to be included in the Test and white-ball squads. Each year, these will be reevaluated.

The finer details, such as the insurance pay for injuries and other similar provisions, still need to be worked out.

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