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Napier eyes IPL riches

Big-hitting Essex batsman wants life-changing chance

Napier: Wants IPL chance

Big-hitting Graham Napier is hoping that his high-scoring exploits for Essex will see him play in the Indian Premier League.

Napier will line up for Essex against Northamptonshire in the quarter-finals of the Twenty20 Cup at Chelmsford on Monday night on the back of two match-winning displays.

He smashed a world record 16 sixes as he scored 152 off just 58 balls in the Twenty20 victory over Sussex, and he followed that up with 61 off 34 deliveries - including six sixes - in the Friends Provident Trophy semi-final win over Yorkshire.

Now Napier, who was beginning to plan for a life away from cricket just a few weeks ago, is now looking towards the riches of the IPL - or even breaking into the England squad for the money-spinning Stanford Challenge match.

He said: "Cricket is a hard game to play for your life and as a career. All county cricketers are always having to think about a career after they have stopped playing.

"Six weeks ago, I was thinking the same, about a career outside of cricket. I was just wondering.


"I wasn't playing championship cricket and I was batting at number nine and not getting much of a knock in the one-day games.

"You think, 'What am I going to do?' but then you have a great two or three weeks and that changes and you are thinking, 'Can I get involved with the IPL or the Stanford game or play for England?'.

"Anytime is good to be hitting the ball well but, with the Stanford game, the IPL and the ICL, it is a particularly good time to be doing that.

"Would I like to play in the IPL? I wouldn't turn it down. It is a life-changing opportunity financially for someone and the Stanford game is the same.

"There is no reason why I can't and I'd love to. They are life changing opportunities for cricketers - especially any county player.

"International players have probably got the benefit of earning the extra money.

"To be involved in something like that would, for me, be life-changing and also an opportunity to pit my talents against the best. It can set you up for life."