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England players given 10 day window

The England and Wales Cricket Board have given the green light for England stars, including Kevin Pietersen and Andrew Flintoff, to play in next season's Indian Premier League.

Following the announcement of England's winter itinerary, ECB chief executive David Collier said that players would no longer be prevented from taking part in the lucrative Twenty20 league.

Centrally contracted players were banned from this year's IPL due to international commitments.

And a number of fringe players, including Ravi Bopara, Luke Wright and Sajid Mahmood all turned down offers in order to remain in county cricket.

The only English player to feature in the tournament was Hampshire captain Dimitri Mascarenhas, whose supporting role for eventual winners Rajasthan Royals sparked fears that he could have endangered his international prospects.

But his inclusion in England's one-day side for the forthcoming series against New Zealand is a clear sign that the English cricket's governing body appears to be softening its initially frosty stance.

Speaking to Radio Five Live Collier said that because England's winter itinerary does not clash fully with the IPL, the door had effectively been opened for top players to cash in.

"It's never been a question of stopping them (appearing), it's a question of which tournament takes precedent at which time," he said.

"It looks like after the West Indies tour there will be a 10-day window before the players need to report back for the first home Test.

"Clearly that's something the coach, Peter Moores, will be looking at and it will be interesting to the players."

"It's fairly common knowledge that that IPL would like more of our players to play and, with very close co-operation with the board in India, there is a possibility of players playing in the future.

"But similar to the Aussies who played for short periods this year, it doesn't seem like it could be for longer than about 10 days."

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