Warner expected to play West Indies T20Is for Australia over ILT20

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Australia’s chair of selectors, George Bailey, expects David Warner will be available to play in three T20Is against West Indies in February despite the series clashing with the ILT20 tournament, where he is contracted to captain Dubai Capitals.

Warner has retired from Test and ODI cricket for Australia but is committed to playing in the T20 World Cup in the Caribbean and US during June.

Warner is planning to play in the ILT20 which begins on January 19, just after the home and away portion of the BBL has concluded with his side Sydney Thunder set to miss finals which avoids a schedule clash.

The tournament runs until February 17 but the three T20Is against West Indies start on February 9 and finish on February 13.

It was thought that Warner would miss those matches in order to play in the entire ILT20 despite still holding a Cricket Australia contract and that he would return for the following series against New Zealand in New Zealand that starts on February 21.

But Bailey said Warner is set to be selected for the West Indies series and will be expected to play.

“He’ll be part of those T20 matches at the back end of the summer and in New Zealand as well,” he said.

Bailey confirmed that CA contracted players, which Warner will be until the end of June, are expected to play for Australia when selected and won’t be granted NOCs to play in other leagues at the same time.

“I think that’s the same with all our Australian contracted players. If they’re going to be selected in a squad then they’re available,” Bailey said.

“If they’re not then it depends on what sort of domestic cricket responsibilities they have. So I think [Warner] had flagged that as potentially one of the reasons why he has made the decision to retire from one-day cricket but we’re still really excited about what he can provide for that T20 team and hoping he can add one more major trophy to his cabinet.”

Bailey and CA’s head of national teams Ben Oliver are charged with making decisions on which players are granted NOCs and have been consistent in their policy of treating each individual case differently.

Australian T20I-only players who are not centrally contracted, like Matthew Wade and Tim David have been allowed to miss international series in recent times to fulfill franchise contracts that they would potentially lose if they played international cricket.

The exceptions were made because they would not receive the same remuneration except for match fees from CA.

David has previously skipped an opportunity to play T20Is for Australia in 2022 in order to play in the PSL while Wade was initially rested from Australia’s T20I series in South Africa last year so he could play a full season in the Hundred, although he was flown in at the last minute as cover after Glenn Maxwell was injured.

Adam Zampa and Marcus Stoinis were both cleared to go to the ILT20 last year despite being CA-contracted players, but they were only set to miss a small number of domestic List A games for their state sides while they were away

Australia coach Andrew McDonald said last month that Australia’s selectors had to be more flexible with their players given the schedule was so cramped.

“Every application is different in terms of the circumstances with what cricket they’ve got coming up,” McDonald said.

“It’s getting more cramped. It’s tough. It’s difficult. I think it comes down to each individual case. Where the player is at within their career. I think every every case should be considered individually and we go from there.” (ESPNcricinfo) 

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