Clarke considers IPL stint despite hectic schedule


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Jun 8, 2009
Clarke considers IPL stint despite hectic schedule

Despite a jam-packed international cricket schedule, Michael Clarke is keen to try his hand at the Indian Premier League (IPL).

Having missed the first two tournaments, the Australian vice-captain indicated he would consider taking part in 2010, believing it could provide ideal preparation for the ICC World Twenty20, which starts five days after the April 25 IPL final.

"For me it's about timing," Clarke told reporters in Edinburgh, where he was preparing to lead Australia in a one-day match against Scotland while Ricky Ponting takes a break in Australia.

"Certainly the positive I see about the IPL is it leads into the Twenty20 world championship, so it's very good preparation for all the guys playing in the IPL, they'll have a lot of Twenty20 cricket going into the world championship.

"At some stage I definitely want to take part in the IPL. It's been a wonderful tournament, it's helped a lot of players.

"It's given guys an opportunity to be on the big stage and put their hand up ... I'd definitely like to take part in it at some stage, I just need to work out when's the right time and hopefully (IPL Commissioner) Lalit (Modi) will let me play, more importantly."

Reports suggested Modi, angered by Clarke's withdrawal from the IPL for a second time in as many years, threatened the Australian with a ban from future participation.

Clarke is only three months into what could turn out to be an 11-month stint of cricket.

Already he has been part of a demoralising group-stage exit from the World Twenty20 and a painful 2-1 Ashes series defeat to England.

The Scotland game was preparation for two Twenty20 matches and then seven one-dayers against England before the Australians head to South Africa for the ICC champions Trophy.

With the NSW Blues involved in the Champions League in October, Clarke could be a very busy man Ahead of Australia's domestic season, hosting the West Indies and Pakistan from November to February.

The IPL starts in March.

Put to him like that, Clarke hung his head and laughed.

No wonder captain Ricky Ponting will not be back until the last four one-day internationals against England from September 12.

"The advantage I have is I haven't played anywhere near as much cricket as Ricky Ponting," Clarke said.

"Punter's been playing for Australia for over 10 years - imagine that for 10 years.

"I think the way we are giving guys an opportunity to have a little bit of time off is really helping."

Clarke has long been expected to take over from Ponting as captain at some point and seeing how much criticism the current skipper has come under after surrendering the Ashes in 2005 and 2009 has not put him off.

"The one thing Punter's always said is that's part of responsibility," Clarke said.

"That's another great strength of Ricky - he does cop it on the chin.

"He's a wonderful leader and somebody I look up to and will continue to learn off."

Clarke considers IPL stint despite hectic schedule - sport -

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