back icon


ICC set to limit overseas players in T20 leagues

Last updated on 13 Jul 2023 | 11:06 PM
Google News IconFollow Us
ICC set to limit overseas players in T20 leagues

In major changes, the Associate cricketers can play IPL without occupying an overseas player's spot

In a major development, ICC has approved limiting the number of overseas players in an XI for all T20 leagues to four, whether active or retired. Therefore, a minimum of seven local players, including Associate cricketers, should feature in all XIs. In addition, the league will have to pay a 10% release fee to the home board of every player who takes part in their league every season. It is a commission to the home board of an overseas player.

The working group behind this recommendation also said that the aim behind this decision is to reduce the risk of Full Member nations losing players to the growing number of T20 leagues. The proposal was approved in ICC’s Annual General Meeting (AGM) in Durban on Thursday (July 13). 

"Moving forward, new events requiring a sanction will need to ensure the playing XI of each team will include a minimum of seven local or associate member players to support the development of the game,” said the ICC statement. 

For the time being, these regulations will not apply to the leagues hosted by boards that are not Full Member nations yet, ie, UAE’s International League T20, USA’s upcoming Major League Cricket and the Global T20 League in Canada, which has had two editions in 2018 and 2019. However, these leagues will have to modify their regulations to obey this ruling within a reasonable period of time. We can presume the changes will be reflected in the subsequent season of these leagues. 

Due to the lack of quality local players, all these teams allowed more than four overseas players in an XI. While ILT20 allowed nine overseas cricketers, up tosix overseas players can be seen in an XI in MLC 2023. 

Player from Associate nations will be the biggest beneficiaries of this decision, as some quality players from countries like Scotland, Netherlands and a few others can now feature more prominently in renowned leagues like the Indian Premier League without exhausting an overseas spot. 

The AGM went on for two days and initially, the proposal to cap the overseas players in an XI was voted down. However, the ICC's chief executives committee (CEC) reconsidered their call and arrived at the 4-7 distribution between overseas and local players on Thursday. 

Wasim Khan (ICC general manager of cricket), Arun Dhumal (IPL chairman & BCCI representative on ICC's CEC), Johnny Grave (CWI CEO), Nick Hockley (Cricket Australia CEO) and Mubashir Usmani (Emirates Cricket Board secretary) were amongst the major decision makers. 

As reported by ESPNCricinfo, the three Associate members on the panel - including Emirates Cricket Board and Cricket Canada - initially opposed the original proposal, which stated a minimum of four local players alongside a maximum of four overseas. 

The BCCI, NZC, BCB, SLC and Zimbabwe Cricket supported the Associates in their disagreement. On the other hand, the PCB, CWI, Cricket Australia, the ECB and Cricket Ireland nodded in agreement. 

After multiple discussions, the new regulations were reached, allowing the integration of Associate players in overseas leagues as local payers. It will limit the ILT20 and MLC from fielding more overseas stars but will also bring in funds to foreign boards if their players are selected, in the form of a release fee. 

The 10% is, however, only a proposed number as yet. It is open for dialogue between the involved parties. There could also be a scenario where the release fee will be cut from the player’s salary. 


Related Article