Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

And Sweet

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

And Sweet

Article excerpt

Byline: Tom Collomosse

LUKE WRIGHT accepts his chance of playing Test cricket for England may have passed but his growing reputation as a Twenty20 expert provides a glimpse into the future of the sport.

While international commitments mean many of England's Test players spend only limited time in T20 franchise tournaments, Wright is carving out a niche as one of the most valuable English cricketers in the shortest form. He will join Pune Warriors for the Indian Premier League, which starts next week, and has already played in Australia's Big Bash -- where his 117 for Melbourne Stars last year was a record -- and Bangladesh's Premier League.

Thanks to his displays, and the work of his agent, Oliver Ward, there have also been offers from Sri Lanka, Pakistan, West Indies and South Africa. Wright does not hold a central contract with the England and Wales Cricket Board, meaning he has more freedom of movement than those who do. His ambition is to become a star for England in 50-over and T20 cricket but it is easy to imagine his colleagues taking an interest in the opportunities available to the 28-year-old all-rounder.

"Everyone wants to play for England as much as possible but they also want to play in the IPL," Wright told Standard Sport. "There are huge opportunities for both cricket and financial gain.

"Maybe there will be a compromise in the future and they will look to schedule Tests differently to allow the England players to be free for more of the IPL.

"Guys don't want to seem ungrateful to be centrally contracted and England will always be the priority but they want a chance to play a bit of both, as players from other countries can.

"Perhaps Tests at the start of the English summer can be scheduled for late May or early June, so England Test players can be involved in the IPL a bit more. Someone like Kevin Pietersen can earn huge amounts of money there and you can't blame him for wanting to play in it, even though England is his priority.

"I'm available for the whole IPL but when there are players available only for two or three weeks, it's no surprise that franchises spend their money on someone who will be there for the entire competition. …

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