It seems like an odd combination, but the latest news is that Cricket Australia and broadcast rights holders are pooling their resources to assist the Sydney Sixers in obtaining the service of AB de Villiers for the next BBL tournament.
It is not quite clear how much the South African will play. The news suggests that de Villiers will have, “A stint at the back end of next summer’s tournament.”
If you were de Villiers, how much BBL cricket would you play for $350,000?
That is the figure being supplied, along with words such as “may” and “more” when it comes to the actual amount.
The men’s ODI team will be away during January of 2019, so there are some gaps to be filled.
All eight of the BBL clubs may have made offers to de Villiers. Sydney Thunder have cap room following the retirement of Shane Watson, who is retiring only in the sense that he will no longer take part in the grind of BBL, but will focus on overseas T20 games.
The Sixers have the stronger hand in that they have a mate of de Villiers in the guise of Morne Morkel and the Sixers play home games at SCG, where de Villiers has been known to whack well. He had a 162 from 66 balls there in 2015 Cricket World Cup play against West Indies.
This will not be the first time Cricket Australia and broadcasters have joined forces to secure marquee players, a couple of examples being Kevin Pietersen and Shane Warne with Melbourne.
Renegades Coach Andrew McDonald expressed some skepticism over the way big name players are recruited. He proposes that the BBL make eight spots available for marquee players, nominate 16 players from around the world, and then use a marquee draft to determine where the players will go.
McDonald also expressed the view that the players signed should be compelled to commit to the entire BBL tournament.