Gilchrist passes on Big Bash final chance
Victoria will stick with its own for tonight's Twenty20 final against New South Wales after former Australian star Adam Gilchrist declined an offer to sign with the Bushrangers.
Cricket Victoria chief executive Tony Dodemaide confirmed yesterday that Gilchrist, although tempted, elected not to pursue the opportunity.
"He wasn't entirely comfortable with it. He thanked us for the offer and said he was flattered, but it was a situation that didn't quite sit well with him," Dodemaide said.
Gilchrist expressed concerns about coming into a team environment for a final, even though there was clearly some merit in the idea when the broader picture of the $9 million Champions League was considered, given Victoria has already qualified.
The former Australian wicketkeeper retired from international cricket last summer, but padded up for the Deccan Chargers in the Twenty20 IPL last April.
The Bushrangers have brought opening batsman Chris Rogers into the 12 to replace injured acting captain Brad Hodge.
Victoria will chase its fourth consecutive Twenty20 crown against a Blues side including New Zealand international Brendon McCullum, who signed with NSW two days ago.
The big-hitting McCullum, who will open the batting for the Blues at ANZ Stadium, said yesterday the key to Twenty20 success was "not taking yourself too seriously".
"In Twenty20 it's a tough games in terms of trying to get consistent results," he said.
"Because of that you can't take yourself too seriously. You just have to enjoy it and realise that some days you're going to score runs and other days you won't."
Dodemaide said Victoria was comfortable with its approach to Gilchrist and had no doubt the advent of the Champions League has made the idea of domestic teams recruiting a high-class import very attractive given the huge prizemoney on offer.
"It was an idea worth looking at - if there are those mechanisms available then it's worth exploring," he said.
"The dimension to Twenty20 is not like any other competition. The reality is our domestic competition is a precursor to the Champions League concept, where there is a lot of money on offer on a world stage."
Victoria explored the idea of recruiting England star Andrew Flintoff this season before logistical problems made it impossible.