IPL payments may split Australian dressing room

February 22nd, 2008 - 4:52 pm ICT by admin  

Melbourne, Feb 22 (IANS) Cricket Australia (CA) has been warned the overflowing rivers of gold from the Indian Premier League - with Andrew Symonds collecting an astonishing $1.35 million - threaten to fracture the Australian dressing room, according to media reports here. A highly placed Australian source confirmed Thursday night that noses were already out of joint over the huge differences in IPL payments.

While Symonds wears his million price tag, skipper Ricky Ponting has collected a relatively meagre $400,000.

“That’s what they offered to pay for me, I didn’t ask for it,” Symonds was quoted as saying by The Herald Sun.

But incredibly, Ponting, the world’s best batsman over the last five years, will earn less than Pura Cup regulars Cameron White ($500,000) and David Hussey ($675,000).

Even the captain Thursday admitted he was disappointed with his IPL fortune.

“I was a little bit disappointed. I thought I might have been able to attract a little bit more than that,” he said.

Ponting, the top-ranked Cricket Australia-contracted player, was understandably stunned as he is universally regarded as the game’s best batsman.

“I have had my fair share of endorsements over the years and always felt that Indian people have warmed to me quite often when I have been there,” Ponting said.

“Lots of things have gone through my mind in the last couple of days.Even my involvement in the Harbhajan thing, but I thought hang on, Symo was involved in it as well.”

Ponting was adamant the cash issue would not split the team.

“It’s probably only me and Matty (Hayden) that will have any reason to be jealous of anybody else. Matty and I are not that sort of people.”

ICC boss Malcolm Speed declared the IPL would not be given a stand-alone spot on the international calendar.

But Ponting said: “I think everyone now understands with the amount of money that is being bandied about, spent in the last couple of days, there is going to be some tough decisions made by international cricketers.

“So, for the betterment of the game worldwide, then the ICC and the home bodies really do have to look at how they can make this thing fit in.

“Because if it doesn’t fit in to the international programme, then you could see the loss of lots of very good Test and one-day players.”

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