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England ponder awarding central contracts to white-ball internationals

Evening Standard logo Evening Standard 4 days ago Will Macpherson
Jason Roy looking at the camera © Provided by Independent Digital News & Media Limited

England are considering awarding central contracts to their white-ball internationals, moving them into line with their Test counterparts.

England brought in central contracts in 2000 and they were last restructured in 2016 to create retainers for white-ball internationals, alongside ECB deals for Test players and those who play all formats.

Currently, players who are only in England’s white-ball teams, like Jason Roy, are paid by their counties, then have an ECB retainer on top of that, worth as much as £160,000, depending on their standing.

(Photo credit should read GLYN KIRK/AFP/Getty Images) © Getty (Photo credit should read GLYN KIRK/AFP/Getty Images)

Players with Test-only or all-format contracts, like Test skipper Joe Root, are paid only by the ECB, although they are occasionally released to play for their counties.

The move, which could happen later this year, would take players with white-ball contracts off their county’s payroll, giving the ECB more control of their activity. Because of this, the counties are unlikely to be against the move.

A top county contract, plus a white-ball retainer, could see players earn in the region of £300,000, which the ECB would need to better. Test players are also set to earn more in the next round of contracts.

(Photo credit should read GEOFF CADDICK/AFP/Getty Images) © Getty (Photo credit should read GEOFF CADDICK/AFP/Getty Images)

The move would not only streamline the system but allow the ECB to make more decisions about when players are rested or play in overseas T20 leagues, like the IPL. It could also mean, of course, they are seen less often in county cricket.

Meanwhile, England are set to rest Jonny Bairstow, Chris Woakes and Liam Plunkett for Friday's fourth ODI against Pakistan at Trent Bridge.

Mark Wood is poised to make his first appearance of the summer and Jofra Archer returns.

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Related: Major ICC Cricket World Cup records through the years [Microsoft GES]


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