The cricketer-turned-commentator Aakash Chopra has said that he cannot complain about Alex Hales’s call to quit international cricket and make a big buck in a shorter format league across the world. Hales recently announced his retirement from international cricket. The opening batsman represented England in 11 tests, 70 ODIs, and 75 T20s and was an integral member of their T20 World Cup-winning team last year.
Reflecting on the development in a video shared on his YouTube channel, Aakash Chopra revealed that Alex Hales could have played international cricket for a few more years. However, the former Indian opener said he could not criticize the English batsman.
“Is it too early? 34 years is an age where you feel you can stretch it for another two-three years. Even if he didn’t play in the ODI World Cup, he could have been a strong candidate for the next T20 World Cup.
“However, he said that he wants to take the route of just playing league cricket and making a lot of money for the next two-three years because he has already won the World Cup and doesn’t have a dream of achieving anything more while playing for England. Do I grudge his money? Not at all.”
Chopra explained that he is not responsible for how Hales makes his living and therefore has no right to say whether he made the right call or not.
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This ever-increasing phenomenon will continue to grow” – Aakash Chopra
Aakash Chopra believes Alex Hales‘ call is a sign of things to come, he believes:
“One thing is for sure – this ever-growing phenomenon will be seen growing further because you now have a league everywhere. You have MLC in America, T10 somewhere else, then Zim Afro, ILT20, CPL, BBL, PSL, IPL, SA20 – there are so many PLs (leagues).”
Noting that cricketers have plenty of options to ply their throughout the year, the eminent commentator said:
“If you have so many, you can always pick and choose. When you have so many leagues, you have the chance to be busy throughout the year. As a cricketer, you want to play cricket and that’s what you are doing. If A gives me more money than B, I am happy to go with A.”
However, Chopra admitted that such calls are a blow to the national teams as they lose the players they have groomed. He said that the board needs to take cognizance of this and reformulate their strategies.