Former Australian skipper Steve Waugh has scoffed at the idea that players are overworked these days, saying that if they are really exhausted, then they should drop the plan of playing in the Indian Premier League (IPL).
With Australia’s Test series against India beginning only a day after finishing the T20 series against Sri Lanka in February next year, there have been concerns that the players will once again start complaining about their hectic international schedule.
“There can’t be (too much cricket) because they choose to play in the Indian Premier League. There can’t be too much cricket because they keep playing more,” Waugh was quoted, as saying by Sport24.
The IPL is played in April and May, the traditional international break, and the 51-year-old insisted that the current Australian cricketers do not have as much workload as the players of yesteryears.
“I looked at the schedules and I think they compared myself and Steve Smith and the previous captains on workload and we’re playing the same amount of days .They don’t play any (Sheffield) Shield cricket or club cricket – we used to play all that as well,” the former skipper said.
“Their’s is probably more intense, more international cricket, but days played, we played as much and travelled as much and these days the hotels are better than when I first started playing,” he added.
Meanwhile, Tony Irish, the Federation of International Cricketers Associations chairman, has shown more sympathy towards the Australian players and voiced his concerns over the way the International Cricket Council (ICC) create fixtures.
Irish said that the ICC’s fixture forces players to choose one format of international cricket over another.
“Players around the world are strong in their view that all international cricket should be the best versus the best and this needs to be the case to ensure the international product is as good as it can be for players, fans and broadcasters,” he said.
“Best versus the best will not happen when elite players who play all formats are not available because the national team is playing different formats at the same time,” Irish added.