Auckland Aces make it to Champions League

Wellington: Auckland Aces are heading to the Champions League qualifying tournament after they won the HRV Cup beating Canterbury Wizards in the final by 44 runs in Auckland.

Their participation in the Champions League qualifying tournament would be worth 200,000 US dollars at the start and the money will go up if the team performs well.

If the Aces manage to enter the main event, they will be paid a minimum of 500,000 US dollars and another benefit being that their player would be exposed to IPL team owners, which would eventually increase their chances of playing in T20’s biggest extravaganza But for the Canterbury Wizards, the loss in the final could hurt them more than a loss in the World Cup final since they have missed a golden opportunity to make quick money as well as getting noticed.

In fact, after the Wizard’s defeat in the final, the players had gloomy faces and catchphrases like ‘gut-wrenching’ and ‘heart-breaking’ were being used, reports.

“It`s a chance to "put yourself in the shop window”, said Kiwi cricketer Rob Nicol. One Wizards player who didn`t wish to be named said this was the only way a player from New Zealand could get noticed. “They just don`t rate New Zealand players,” he said.

“That`s the only way we can get noticed because they [IPL teams] just don`t rate guys from down here. They`ll pay Australian domestic cricketers, who are only as good as some of the guys here, 500,000 US dollars a year,” he added.