The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) announced its Central Contract offers a couple of days ago. A total of 30 English cricketers received Central Contract offers. While 18 of these 30 players got the England Annual Central Contracts, six got the England Increment Contracts and the rest six got England Pace Bowling Development Contracts.
The board said that the system, which covers both red-ball and white-ball players, takes into account the likelihood of players featuring in England teams across formats in the next 12 months, whilst also recognising performances in the preceding year. However, one of their players, Dawid Malan has accused the system of favouring Test players.
Malan has expressed disappointment at the way these contracts have been awarded and has already taken the matter to Managing Director Rob Key. Notably, Malan dropped from a full deal to an incremental one in the ECB's new set of central contracts announced on Tuesday (11 October). The increment contracts recognise players who may feature for England on a less predictable basis and the batter finds it strange.
"It's a slightly strange system," said Malan. "It seems heavily led towards red-ball cricket. Ultimately it puts you in tough situations if you're not contracted because you're losing finances you'd get if you were playing in (franchise) tournaments."
The batter also brought it to everyone’s notice that how England’s leading wicket-taker in T20Is, Chris Jordan did not even get a contract. "You have players here who have been leading wicket-takers for England that don't have a contract, but those are decisions that I don't make," said Malan. "As players, we'd like to be rewarded for our performances for England."
Jordan had an Increment Contract offer previously but was offered no contract for the 2022-23 season. Notably, the two cricketers are currently representing England in their three-match T20I series against Australia. They will also feature in the T20 World Cup.