Mascarenhas defends IPL deal
Dimitri Mascarenhas has revealed his fear that playing in the Indian Premier League could cost him a place in the England one-day international side.
The 30-year-old Hampshire all-rounder was involved in England's one-day side in the recent tour of New Zealand. But he feels his signing up to the IPL, which starts in April, is a "definite risk" to his selection in the future. Mascarenhas has, though, told BBC 5 Live that England officials have so far been "positive" about his decision.
"I'm going away, not playing for Hampshire for a couple of weeks so it depends how you want to look at it," he said. I've spoken to Hugh Morris (managing director of the England team) and new selector Geoff Miller about it and they seem pretty positive because of the fact I don't have a central contract.
"I'm not missing any England one-dayers by being over there which is a huge plus. To be honest if I was missing some one-dayers then I don't think I would have gone. I spoke to (Hampshire chairman) Rod Bransgrove and I needed him to agree to let me go."
"He was very understanding and we came to an agreement and in the end worked out a pretty good deal to allow me to go."
England and Wales Cricket Board chairman Giles Clarke has recently said he has "no interest" in England players taking part in the competition. And Andrew Flintoff and Kevin Pietersen subsequently pledged their commitment to England ahead of the chance to play in the IPL.
But Mascarenhas revealed that the issue of Twenty20 cricket and in particular the IPL has been a hot topic of conversation in the England dressing room.
"I am not sure if they are necessarily talking about leaving and going to the IPL - a lot of them have central contracts and most of the talk is about money and how ridiculous it was," he added. I was in a different situation because I did not have a central contract which gave me the green light to pursue it and I did.
"The money is pretty good but the concept and to be involved in such a huge tournament and play with all the big names is amazing and I'm looking forward to it.
"It is going to be huge and there is so much scope for Twenty20 to get bigger. Playing Twenty20 at the Rose Bowl is brilliant. Ten thousand people turn up - it is packed every single time and it is just amazing to play in."