England batter Jason Roy on Thursday gave up his England Cricket Board (ECB) incremental contract to play for Los Angeles Knight Riders in Major League Cricket in the United States. ECB, however, assured that he would still be considered for selection for the national white-ball teams.
“England Men’s white-ball batter Jason Roy has informed the England & Wales Cricket Board (ECB) that he wishes to take up an agreement with Major League Cricket in the USA later this summer. The ECB have agreed for him to play in the competition on the proviso that he gives up the remainder of his ECB incremental contract, which both parties have agreed to. The ECB wish to clarify that this decision will not affect Jason’s selection for England teams going forward. We have absolute confidence and faith that Jason is committed to England cricket,” the board said in a statement, according to PTI.
Earlier, Roy had released a statement saying that he will ‘never walk away from England’. “Following a bit of unwanted speculation over the last 24 hours, I wanted to clarify that I am not and never will ‘walk away from England’. Representing my country continues to be my proudest moment as a professional cricketer. I hope to play for England for many more years, that remains my priority,” Roy said on Twitter.
Please read. pic.twitter.com/FrKWhUn1aM
— Jason Roy (@JasonRoy20) May 25, 2023
“I’ve had clear and supportive conversations with the ECB about participating in Major league Cricket. The ECB were happy with me to play in the competition as long as they didn’t have to pay me for the remainder of the contractual year. As a single format player with no central contract I wanted to take the opportunity to play this competition as there are currently no scheduling conflicts with England. It benefits me as an England player to play as much competitive cricket possible,” he added.
“Just to be very clear, my priority is England cricket, especially with a World Cup soon upon us. It is for me, and for any player, the greatest honour to receive a cap to play for their country,” his statement concluded.
Earlier, a Daily Mail report stated that the batter had been offered a two-year deal worth around £300,000 by the Major league Cricket franchise.
Last month, the Times London had reported that owners of top IPL franchises are trying to convince as many as six premier England players to quit international cricket and take up handsome annual contracts ranging up to 5 million pounds in order to play T20 leagues round the year.
Almost all the 10 IPL franchises have branched out in various leagues, including CPL (West Indies), SA T20 (South Africa), Global T20 League (UAE) and the upcoming Major League T20 in the US.
Roy was an integral part of the England setup under Eoin Morgan and won the 2019 World Cup. He was then dropped from the squad for the T20 World Cup last year, which England went on to win.
Last year, he made his return to the ODI team and played against Australia, South Africa and Bangladesh.