President of the Barbados Cricket Association (BCA) Conde Riley is hoping that Barbados-born all-rounder Jofra Archer, has a change of heart about playing for England.
Archer who has an English father and a British passport is not eligible to play for England until 2022 because under the rules of the England and Wales Cricket Board, he did not live in England until after his 18th birthday, therefore he needs to complete a seven-year residency period.
The talented 23-year-old fast-bowling all-rounder who played for the West Indies Under-19 team in 2014, has publicly stated his intention to play for England. This year, Archer played for Rajasthan Royals in the Indian Premier League (IPL), he has also played for the Hobart Hurricanes in the Big Bash in Australia.
Speaking at a presentation of cheques to the Wanderers and YMPC clubs, representative of release fees gained as a result of Jason Holder and Dwayne Smith playing in the Indian Premier League, Riley without mentioning Archer’s name expressed the hope that he has second thoughts about playing for England.
“I am sure you are aware that a young player, a Barbadian has recently been drafted into the IPL. He has never played for Barbados, his choice is to represent England, I hope that he will change his mind before 2022. His local club will receive a substantial sum of money as a result of him being drafted into the IPL,” Riley said.
The president explained that at the inception of the IPL and the other Twenty20 leagues around the world, negotiations took place for a release fee which would benefit the home clubs of players drafted.
“This fee is not from the cricketer’s fee, it is from the franchise for which they play. The arrangement got off the ground in 2014, the cheques we are presenting this morning are for 2015 and 2016. There is one person missing from these payments and that is Carlos Brathwaite, we are trying to get that matter sorted out with Cricket West Indies,” Riley stated.
He expressed the hope that in the future a lot more local clubs would benefit from players’ release for the Twenty20 leagues in Bangladesh and Pakistan.
“We are working with Cricket Australia to see if we can get some of those fees from the Big Bash. I understand that England will be having a big Twenty20 tournament this year, if we can get some of our cricketers playing in that tournament their club will benefit,” he explained.
The BCA also received a cheque for $50,000 from CAGE Lottery. According to Gregory Nicholls, the chairman of the BCA’s Lottery Committee, the cheque was an example of how the BCA received funds to develop their programmes.
“Over the years, we have established a video lottery service with CAGE, they are currently 349 machines across Barbados. We are hoping to apply to the Betting and Gaming Commission to increase these machines,” Nicholls said.
He stated that the funding of sports by the government was not something that the BCA felt the government should undertake in the current economic climate.
“We feel we can enhance ourselves if we have more machines operating. We are in the process of putting the final touches to our Cricket Development Plan in which we will do more work on the foundation of our cricket. The last Development Plan saw the creation of the Sir Everton Weekes Centre of Excellence, the placing of coaches in schools and in Elite and the First Division clubs. We also did some work on the structure of some of our major clubs. It is our intention to expand our cricket development to make cricket the first choice for Barbadian men and women,” he added.