Counties Back Durham Chair Ian Botham's Call For Cricket Transfer System
Leading execs at County Championship sides have backed Durham County Cricket Club Chair Ian Botham's call for English cricket to introduce "a transfer or similar system of compensation" for counties losing their young players, according to Scyld Berry of the London TELEGRAPH. Botham made his plea after Durham lost all-rounder Paul Coughlin to Nottinghamshire for next season. Middlesex CEO Richard Goatley said, "Counties need to be protected from losing their young players. A level of financial compensation is appropriate, but not a transfer battle with fees and windows and agents getting involved." That call "has been echoed by Surrey," which did not receive any compensation when its 21-year-old batsman, Dominic Sibley, moved to Warwickshire earlier this season. On that basis, the club wrote to the other 17 first-class counties proposing the following formula: "Any home developed player below the age of 24 who chooses to move to a new county, despite being offered a new and improved contract by his home county, would attract a compensation fee payable by the new county of 2 x the final salary offer by the home county." Other ideas "are also being considered." Gloucestershire CEO Will Brown said that he would "be quite supportive of a football-style transfer window" where deals could be done, while Yorkshire CEO Mark Arthur favors "keeping and extending the system of loans" (TELEGRAPH, 9/20).