Warner a big money prize for The Hundred
David Warner, Marnus Labuschagne, Mitch Marsh and Josh Philippe are among the Australian stars who will feature in the draft for English cricket's The Hundred.
18 February 2021, 07:47 AM AEST
David Warner is set to be the big money headline act in the English cricket summer as he heads an array of 38 top Australian players chasing the remaining places in The Hundred tournament.
Warner has re-entered the tournament draft in a bid to earn one of the remaining seven overseas slots up for grabs in the inaugural 100-ball-a-side innovation.
But grabbing the signature of the Australian luminary will not come cheap for any of the potential eight suitor teams as Warner is one of just 10 overseas players who have set the highest reserve price of GBP100,000 (A$180,000).
The others alongside the 34-year-old Warner in the top bracket are Babar Azam, Quinton de Kock, Kagiso Rabada, Lockie Ferguson, Shakib-al-Hasan, Jason Holder, Kieron Pollard, Nicholas Pooran and Tamim Iqbal.
Warner had originally been due to play for the Southampton-based Southern Brave in 2020 but pulled out of the inaugural event which ended up being shelved in the pandemic.
Neither Steve Smith nor Mitchell Starc, who both originally signed up with Cardiff-based Welsh Fire for 2020, have re-entered the draft.
Yet Warner, who also hadn't been expected to play this season, is taking advantage of fresh opportunities after Australia's tour to South Africa was cancelled.
Among the 500 players, mostly English, throwing their hat into the draft, there are more than a few other Australian Big Bash stars who are interested – and will come a bit cheaper than Warner.
Perth Scorchers allrounder Mitch Marsh and paceman Jhye Richardson, along with Sydney Sixers wicketkeeper-batsman Josh Philippe, are on at the next highest reserve of level of GBP80,000 ($A143,000).
Marnus Labuschagne, Dan Christian, Andrew Tye, Matthew Wade and Jason Behrendorff are in the GBP60,000 ($A107,500) bracket while Alex Carey is available at GBP48,000 ($A86,000).
Ben Cutting, James Faulkner and Usman Khawaja have been set at GBP40,000 ($A72,000) with Fawad Ahmed, Travis Head and Mark Steketee in the GBP32,000 ($A57,000) bracket.
The Aussies with no reserve price are Sean Abbott, Wes Agar, Jackson Bird, Hilton Cartwright, Ben Dunk, Ben Dwarshuis, Nathan Ellis, Callum Ferguson, Chris Green, Sam Heazlett, Daniel Hughes, Josh Inglis, Josh Lalor, Ben McDermott, Lloyd Pope, Alex Ross, Billy Stanlake, Ashton Turner, Jake Weatherald, Jon Wells, Jack Wildermuth and Daniel Worrall.
The eight competing teams in The Hundred have already retained some players that they signed from the 2019 draft, including Australian stars Adam Zampa, Glenn Maxwell, Aaron Finch, Chris Lynn, Marcus Stoinis, Nathan Coulter-Nile and D'Arcy Short.
Competition to join them will now be fierce, as 252 overseas players in total have entered the men's draft, battling for the seven places while 254 British-based players have also put their names forward in a bid to gain one of only 28 domestic places.
The draft will take place behind closed doors on February 22 with the final selections revealed the following day.