London: Chief executives of the 18 English cricket counties here believe that the cash-rich Indian Premier League (IPL) will make it difficult for them to attract foreign players.

The BCCI and ICC-backed IPL has enlisted several foreign players who currently play in county cricket, including Australian spin legend Shane Warne, who is seen as the biggest loss. He currently plays for Hampshire.

Former Australian opener Justin Langer, who captains Somerset, has also signed a three-year agreement with IPL.

Among the other counties who may lose players to the IPL for the start of the season are Derbyshire (Mahela Jayawardene), Middlesex (Murali Kartik), Surrey (Mohammad Asif), Kent (Justin Kemp) and Glamorgan (Jason Gillespie).

Reports here say that many chief executives have resigned themselves to losing their overseas players for the first two months of the season and feel it will become harder to attract foreign players to England.

Mark Newton, chief executive of Worcestershire, told The Times that the IPL was “making life very difficult, there are very few high-class overseas players available.”

“I can see a scenario when a county player is coming to the end of his career and is offered $200,000 for six weeks’ work. Throw in media work and it would be tempting,” he said.

The Glamorgan cricket manager Mathew Maynard said, “The IPL could have a massive impact on the game. In a few years there could be fixtures between Manchester and Mumbai.” — PTI

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