England cricket central contracts: What is an increment contract? Who has a central contract?

The Cricketer breaks down the details behind the ECB's central contracts


The ECB award three different types of contract, depending on which format they are expected to feature in for their country and how regularly they are expected to play.

The three contract types are Test, white-ball and increment.

Who gets which contract?

Test contracts and white-ball contracts do what they say on the tin: they are handed out to players who feature regularly in the five-day and one-day arena.

Those players who regularly represent England in all formats are given both a Test and a white-ball contract.

Who controls availability?

Centrally contracted players have their availability dictated by the ECB. The England staff will determine, for example, when a player might be available for county matches.

Increment contracts are given to players who are still proving themselves in the international arena.

They may have made an impact in the white-ball game, for instance, but are yet to establish themselves in Test cricket.

Increment contracts do not give the ECB overall jurisdiction in the availability and workload of a player. However, because they do receive an additional salary on top of their county wage, the England team is entitled to some say in such matters.

How much are they worth?

Red-ball contracts are worth in the region of £700,000 per year, plus bonuses relating to performance. Those in possession of a Test contract have their wages paid entirely by the ECB.

White-ball contracts are worth around £170,000 per year in addition to a county salary. 

Players receive a ranking based on their performances, off-field contribution, fielding and fitness. Those rankings will then correlate with the level of remuneration.

Who currently has a deal?

The most recent set of central contracts began on October 1, 2020 and cover a 12-month period.

Test and white-ball: Jofra Archer, Jos Buttler, Joe Root, Ben Stokes, Chris Woakes

Test only: James Anderson, Stuart Broad, Rory Burns, Sam Curran, Zak Crawley, Ollie Pope, Dom Sibley

White-ball only: Moeen Ali, Jonny Bairstow, Tom Curran, Eoin Morgan, Adil Rashid, Jason Roy, Mark Wood

Increment contracts: Dom Bess, Chris Jordan, Dawid Malan, Jack Leach

Pace-bowling contracts: Saqib Mahmood, Craig Overton, Olly Stone

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