Warne slates CA for BBL expansion

NEW DELHI: Australian bowling legend Shane Warne has slammed Cricket Australia on Twitter for its ‘greed’ over CA's decision to expand the T20 Big Bash League next summer.

According to the plan, the new BBL will have 43 matches instead of 35. This will extend the tournament up to mid-February as four new venues will be introduced in the 2018-19 season. 

Reportedly, the BBL will have more focus on the finals to offer more to broadcasters. Earlier this month, Channel Seven and Fox Sports signed a six-year deal with Cricket Australia for broadcast rights which are valued at $921 million.

Warne tweeted that expanding the BBL would "dilute a wonderful product".

“Ps And hopefully greed would then be thrown out the door too ! For example - it’s  ridiculous that the BBL will have a lot more games next season & beyond - It’s a great comp & less is more should be the attitude - not let’s put more games on for $$ - diluting a wonderful product”, Warne posted on his official Twitter handle.

"Australian Cricket should be an equal partnership between the players & the board, then everyone would be on the same page, sure they won't always agree - but if both parties attitude is what's best for Australian Cricket & not themselves, then Cricket & the fans would b happy.”

Warne isn’t alone in taking such a stand. The Australian Cricketers' Association (ACA), which was involved in a heated pay dispute with the CA last year, warned that such changes had to have the ideal balance to keep all stakeholders happy.

Cricket Australia CEO James Sutherland, meanwhile, told ESPNcricinfo that the motive behind adding more fixtures was to find the "right balance" and build up to the tournament's climax properly rather to expand the competition.