Demand and supply for Freddie

Reading about Andrew Flintoff’s decision to put himself in the market as a freelance cricketer and the umbrage about it, one wonders what all the fuss is about.
He is not doing anything new in cricket, if not in the total world of sports. Beyond the upper crust of international and first class cricket in all its splendour, there are thousands of fringe players who have been doing that, in India’s example, from Ranji cricket to gully cricket.
From Manoj Joglekar and Kiran Powar to Rohan Gavaskar, if players can switch allegiance even once to other Ranji teams, how different are they from being freelancers.
In the world of tennis ball or ‘box’ cricket, there are many ‘professionals’ who play for two teams from different localities or ghettos on any given day.
In Flintoff’s case, he knows there are umpteen counties in English cricket. Add to that the clamour for him between Indian Premier League clubs and a few from South Africa and Australia for starters. Even if he turns 40 in age, with all the state mini-IPL leagues mushrooming in India, there will surely be someone who will bring up the cash to keep his house fire burning.
Let’s face it. Flintoff knows he has played his part for the country and wore his patriotism on his sleeve ( and arm, he has a tattoo of Engand’s three lions on his arm).
He has to figure out his own retirement plan now because country boards can only reward his contribution with entries in their record books as his statistics.
At the end of the day, the decision to go freelance, in any field – be it sports or a job – means a man thinks the demand is out there and he would like to be free to supply his services. As long as there are takers for his services, he will survive. And so will others who follow suit.
Id at all there is a debate, those can argue the morality bit of opting for county and club over country. In his case, he has settled that debate and done his bit for England.
Now he is on his own, figuring out his personal economics.

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