Former Australian captain Michael Clarke has claimed that players shouldn't complain about packed international schedules. Clarke's comments came after all-rounder Moeen Ali hit out at the same, with England scheduled to play a three-match ODI series against Australia mere days after featuring in the T20 World Cup 2022 final on Sunday, November 13.
Speaking ahead of the series, which starts on Thursday, November 17, Ali criticized such a short turnaround time, adding that maintaining full intensity for every game is challenging.
England head coach Matthew Mott also echoed the all-rounder's sentiments, stating that the scheduling is far from ideal.
Clarke, however, feels players shouldn't grumble about packed international schedules when they play franchise cricket with enthusiasm to earn millions. The 41-year-old believes that cricketers can stay fresh by avoiding featuring in the cash-rich T20 leagues.
Clarke was quoted as saying by Fox Sports:
"If it was playing in the T20 World Cup and then the next day get on a plane to depart for the IPL, I don’t think you’d hear anybody whinge.
"Players can’t complain about the international schedule when they’re taking opportunity to play domestic cricket as well for franchises for money when you can have that six or eight weeks off. Then you’d be as fresh as a daisy. I’ve obviously found that very hard."
Australian Test and ODI captain Pat Cummins has done the same, confirming on Tuesday, November 15, his decision to skip IPL 2023, given the packed international schedule.
"I know how hectic it is" - Michael Clarke
Clarke was quick to empathize with the players, stating that he knows how rigorous their schedules are. However, the former batter conceded that he hardly sees them call out the packed calendar when playing in tournaments like the IPL. He explained:
"I know how busy it is. I know how hectic it is. Yes, it’s a mental challenge traveling the world 10 months of the year feeling like you’re playing or training or sitting on aeroplane every day, there’s no doubt about it, it’s a full-time job.
"But you do get breaks on your schedule and when you decide on playing in competitions like the IPL, especially for Australian players, that’s your opportunity to have a break. You choose to go and play that, no matter what you feel you cannot publicly complain about it. You’re not going to win that battle."
Defending champions and hosts Australia failed to progress to the semi-finals of the T20 World Cup 2022. England, meanwhile, beat Pakistan by five wickets in the final at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) to lift the trophy for the second time.