English opener Alex Hales feels that shortening the BBL would encourage more foreign players to go to Australia for the event. Alex Hales, an English batter, feels that shortening the Big Bash League would inspire more foreign players to go to Australia for the annual T20 game.
Hales on fire in BBL12
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The BBL has lasted seven weeks and 61 games since the summer of 2019-20, almost double the 31 games played in the original version. It is also substantially lengthier than similar T20 events, such as the Pakistan Super League and the UAE T20 League, which will play 34 games over around a month and can normally provide a better rate of pay per game to visiting players. Currently, overseas prospects often play just a portion of the BBL before being lured away by the chance of more salary for fewer games.
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Sydney Thunder opener Alex Hales is one such player; the Englishman has been a regular in the BBL for the last four summers but will depart for the UAE T20 League after Sunday’s Sydney Smash against the Sydney Sixers. “(The BBL) is just a very long tournament at the moment so it’s tough for people to commit to that when they can play two tournaments in the same timeframe that are probably a bit more lucrative,” Hales told AAP.
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It does seem awkward to quit the competition after nine games. It’s not perfect. But, given the present state of all the tournaments, it’s difficult not to.” Cricket Australia’s new television agreement with Fox Sports and the Seven Network calls for the BBL to be reduced to 43 games from the summer of 2024-25. However, league executives told AAP this week that plans to shorten the tournament might be pushed out to next summer, pending consent from broadcasters.
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Hales said that teammates from England’s T20 World Cup-winning squad had indicated a wish to join him in Australia and that shortening the competition would be the first step in getting them out. Everyone wants to come to Australia and play,” Hales told AAP. It’s absolutely my favorite spot in the world to come and perform. You’d get a lot more dedication from abroad players if you reduced it down to five to six weeks.”
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More Test players will return to the BBL in the coming days, after the release of Australian team members Marcus Harris and Lance Morris from international duty to join the Melbourne Renegades and Perth Scorchers, respectively. Renegades hitter Peter Handscomb will continue with the Australian team as a replacement fielder for the final Test against South Africa.