Oz may lose experienced players to ICL: Lehmann

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Melbourne, Mar 1 (UNI) Former Australian batsman Darren Lehmann has warned that the Indian Cricket League (ICL) will play havoc with domestic competitions Down Under if players continued to be banned for joining the rebel Twenty20 tournament.

''It (the lure of the ICL) is certainly going to impact on experience levels,'' Lehmann said.

''I think that trend will continue among experienced state players who probably are not going to play for Australia again.

They can go to the ICL and make a really good pay day.

''Some of them would want to keep playing (for their states) but they can't. I understand the rules, but it would be nice to get some discussion happening around the issue.'' Cricket Australia (CA) has distanced itself from the ICL which is a direct competitor of the BCCI-backed Indian Premier League (IPL) warning state players that selectors would treat them less favourably than those who take part in sanctioned events.

The 38-year-old left hander said young cricketers will get more opportunities if older players were barred from playing state cricket.

He however, warned, ''We have to make sure we keep domestic cricket as strong as we can. It is our greatest strength and the best preparation to go on and play Test cricket.'' Gillespie, who announced his retirement from first-class cricket yesterday, is the third Australian after Matthew Elliott and Michael Kasprowicz to join the ICL.

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