Opener Jason Roy is mulling over renegotiating his contract with the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) in order to take up lucrative offers to play in the first season of the upcoming Major League Cricket (MLC) in the United States of America.
With the global cricket ecosystem witnessing an increasing loyalty shift towards franchise-based T20 leagues, a lot of English cricketers like Roy would be sought after in every league and it might make them think about the amount of time they want to devote to national duty.
Six players from England – Roy, Reece Topley, Harry Brook, Dawid Malan, Matthew Potts and David Willey – have incremental contracts with the ECB. The report informed that these contracts are worth around GBP 66,000 per year and act as a ‘top-up to County salaries’.
Apart from the right-handed opening batter Roy, who recently played for the two-time Indian Premier League winner Kolkata Knight Riders, fast bowler Topley is also considering making the same move.
However, Topley’s decision could be influenced by his fitness status following a surgery to his shoulder, reported ESPNCricinfo.
Topley was also last seen in the IPL, wherein he played a few matches for the Royal Challengers Bangalore initially.
The report added that England players, who have full central contracts, are not likely to feature in the MLC this year but Roy, who has an incremental deal with the ECB, is planning to terminate it, which would help him to take up a role in the league to be played in the US.
The MLC is slated to be held from July 13-30 this year at the Grand Prairie Stadium in Texas.
The league has considerable backing from India and Australia, with four IPL team owners investing in as many MLC franchises and Australia’s Cricket Victoria and Cricket New South Wales have stakes in the remaining two teams.
The MLC’s first edition is also set to clash with the English summer as the semifinal and final of the T20 Blast will be on July 15, whereas two County Championship games will also be in the same duration. Additionally, the ECB’s Hundred starts on August 1.
Due to these fixtures, ECB will not issue NOCs which would enable their contracted players to take part in the MLC. While the fully-contracted players will not be able to negotiate a release with the ECB, those who have incremental contracts are in a position to do so.
Meanwhile, Surrey is expecting Roy to play the MLC, most likely for LA Knight Riders, which will be held between the end of the T20 Blast and the beginning of the Hundred.
Australia’s Marcus Stoinis, South Africa’s Quinton de Kock, Sri Lanka’s Wanindu Hasaranga, South Africa’s Anrich Nortje and New Zealand’s Glenn Phillips have been revealed as the overseas signings in the MLC.
Additionally, New Zealand’s Trent Boult and Australia’s Adam Zampa are also expected to join the league in the US in coming time.
All these players featured in the league round of the IPL.