Adam Parore: Egos drawing out Indian Twenty20 battle

By Adam Parore

Those hoping for a swift resolution between India's warring Twenty20 competitions are out of luck.

The only thing that was swift about the meeting between the bosses of the Indian cricket board, who operate the Indian Premier League, and the Indian Cricket League was the length of their get-together.

In time, there should be a way the two can operate happily alongside each other.

But there are large egos involved, men for whom taking a step back would be anathema.

I'm intrigued by what seems to be a shift in public perception in recent days regarding the IPL and ICL, in which I played for the Chennai Superstars franchise earlier this year and will do so again in February.

The ICL were regarded as the troublemakers, pinching test players for a private operation; the IPL were set up as the white knights riding in to save the game.

As things have panned out, the "official" IPL are the bad boys of world cricket, whereas the ICL is no threat to anybody and - contrary to some initial thoughts - not going to ruin the game at all.

The IPL has almost come in under the radar. It is reshaping the landscape and risks tearing the game apart.

The BCCI has launched something of a land grab on world cricket. What the BCCI has said, and what it is doing, are completely different things.

Lalit Modi, the IPL boss, seems to have a philosophy of walking quietly, but carrying a big stick. He'll tell you one thing, then turn round and bang you on the head.

That said, once the egos have been put aside, there's no reason why the two competitions can't live together harmoniously.

And forget talk about players in the ICL then wanting the right to return to international cricket. There are 10 New Zealanders in the ICL and I don't think any of them would fancy that.

International cricket is great when you're playing. You are at the pinnacle of your sport.

Then, about six to 12 months after you've stopped, you realise there's a wide world out there and you actually can live without international cricket. Life goes on.

It seems the be all and end all while you're doing it, but then you discover people can live quite productive, enjoyable lives without playing for their country.

And it can be quite a surprise, because at the time you don't realise that. Players don't lie awake at night because they no longer play international cricket.

Think about Shane Bond and the way he has played down talk of returning, if the ICL players are freed up to become eligible.

Bond is making about $1.5 million a year for four months' work at a standard where, if he's at 80 per cent of his peak, he's doing a really good job for his team. It's reasonably low stress from a performance perspective, he's making heaps of money, and can play with his kids eight months a year. Why would you not want to do that?

* New Zealand will have half an eye on the Australian test series next month as they square off against Bangladesh in their two tests.

I'd expect the gap between the two countries will be shown up, as tends to happen in the longest form of the game. New Zealand should win the tests comfortably, but they'll want to try to do it in such a way they get some benefit ahead of Australia.

By that I mean the batsmen will have targets, such as batting entire sessions, and will certainly want runs to get themselves into reasonable form. In particular, opener Aaron Redmond, new cap Jesse Ryder and relative newcomer Daniel Flynn will be keen to prove themselves.

The drawn first test between India and Australia was revealing for the inability of the Aussies to get 20 Indian wickets.

No McGrath, no Warne, no Gillespie; things are changing for Australia.

Brett Lee is a decent strike bowler, but New Zealand should be looking at the Australians and picking up a sense that if they arrive in good shape they might surprise those predicting a drubbing.

But to do that they first need to make the best of what lies ahead against the Bangladeshis.

- NZ Herald

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