I am worried about the IPL – in fact, I feel it shouldn’t be there at all – Sir Ian Botham


England’s great Sir Ian Botham has said the Indian premier league (IPL) was “too powerful” for cricket’s long-term good as he called for the lucrative Twenty20 domestic tournament to be scrapped.

Delivering the MCC spirit of Cricket Cowdrey lecture at Lord’s, Botham also expressed his fears about the IPL’s effect on corruption within the world game.

The former England captain, 58, said: “I’m worried about the IPL – in fact, I feel it shouldn’t be there at all as it is changing the priorities of world cricket. Players are slaves to it. Administrators bow to it.”

“How on Earth did the IPL own the best players in the world for two months a year and not pay a penny to the boards who brought these players into the game?”

“I know this has been modified to a degree, but it is still an imbalance. The IPL is too powerful for the long-term good of the game.”

“Corruption is enough of a problem in itself, but the IPL compounds that problem given it provides the perfect opportunity for betting and therefore fixing.

“We have seen a few players exposed, but does throwing the odd second XI player into jail solve it? To kill the serpent, you must cut off its head. The ICC [International Cricket Council] Anti-Corruption Unit must pursue the root of the problem and if necessary expose the big names.”

- Telegraph

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