Proteas Quinton de Kock

Wicketkeeper-batsman Quinton de Kock hung up his ODI gloves and bat following South Africa’s elimination from the 2023 Cricket World Cup. Photo by PHILL MAGAKOE / AFP

Who’s who on Cricket World Cup rich list

Pakistan’s squad at the 2023 Cricket World Cup have not been paid for 5 months, highlighting the wealth gap among cricket’s leading nations.

Proteas Quinton de Kock

Wicketkeeper-batsman Quinton de Kock hung up his ODI gloves and bat following South Africa’s elimination from the 2023 Cricket World Cup. Photo by PHILL MAGAKOE / AFP

Recent revelations that players in Pakistan’s squad at the ongoing Cricket World Cup in India have not been paid for five months once again highlighted the wealth gap among cricket’s leading nations.

QUESTION | Will there be another public holiday if the Proteas win the 2023 Cricket World Cup?

Below, a look at cricket’s ‘haves’ and ‘have nots’.


Superstar batsman Virat Kohli leads India’s list of highest-paid athletes with earnings of $33.9 million mainly from brand endorsements, according to analysts Sportico’s 2022 list.

A growing economy in the world’s most populous nation, allied to a fanatical love of cricket, has turned India into the global game’s financial powerhouse.

Its lucrative Twenty20 Indian Premier League sees the world’s top cricketers earn sums unimaginable to previous generations of players.

India captain Rohit Sharma, who like Kohli also boasts a lucrative IPL deal and brand endorsements, has earnings estimated at $25.84 million.

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Under England’s complex system of central contracts, top all-format stars such as Ben Stokes can earn in the region of £800 000 to £900 000 ($977 000 to $1.09 million) annually.

Match fees for Tests are in the region of £15 000 ($18 562) with £4 500 ($5 568) for a one-day international.

Franchise cricket offers another source of income, with Sam Curran becoming the most expensive player in an IPL auction when the left-arm paceman was signed for $2.23 million by the Punjab Kings in December.

England, enduring a woeful defence of their World Cup title, recently handed out multi-year contracts for the first time in a bid to prevent leading players quitting the international arena altogether in favour of the franchise circuit.

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Test and one-day captain Pat Cummins is reportedly on track to become Australia’s first A$3 million ($1.9 million) man after centrally-contracted male players were awarded a 7.5 percent increase this year.

Cummins is on a retainer of A$2 million which will rise to around A$3 million with match fees and bonuses for being captain, the Sydney Morning Herald said.

The average retainer for centrally-contracted players in the 2023/24 season is A$951 000, plus match fees.

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The economies of Bangladesh and Sri Lanka are simply nowhere near big enough to generate the kind of mega commercial deals available to their neighbouring Indian counterparts.

But their top players still appear in the IPL, with Sri Lanka leg-spinner Wanindu Hasaranga earning a $1.43 million contract at the Royal Challengers Bangalore last year.

Shakib Al Hasan remains Bangladesh’s star player and his net worth is estimated at $75 million from a mix of T20 deals, a national contract and endorsements.


Pakistan’s star players are denied access to the riches of the IPL, being effectively banned from the tournament on political grounds.

The relative weakness of their national economy compared to those of the ‘Big Three’ of India, England and Australia is reflected in a central contract system where players in the elite category A receive a monthly six million Pakistani Rupees ($21 552) payment which equates to an annual figure of $258 624.

International regulars can supplement these deals with match fees, including a rate of 475 000 PKR ($1 706).

Pakistan captain Babar Azam, one of world cricket’s leading all-format batsmen, has an estimated net worth of to $5 million according to research by Sportskeeda.


South Africa’s leading players are on basic annual contracts ranging from approximately R1.2 million ($65 000) to R3 million ($160 000).

This amount can be doubled by match fees, bonuses and commercial agreements, with a separate rights deal in place at a World Cup where the Proteas have been one of the form teams.

Even so, leading South African players earn less for playing for their country than by appearing in franchise cricket.

Kagiso Rabada earned $1.1 million from playing in the 2023 IPL, with in-form batsman Quinton de Kock – who plans to quit ODI cricket after the World Cup – some $810 000.


Trent Boult is said to be the Black Caps’ highest-paid player, banking NZ$2.7 million ($1.6 million) according to the New Zealand Herald from overseas deals despite the seamer turning down a national central contract in 2022.

Most of that income from his IPL stint with the Rajasthan Royals but he also earned lucrative T20 contracts in Australia, the United Arab Emirates and the United States.

The Black Caps’ world-class batsman Kane Williamson reportedly earns over NZ$1 million from his New Zealand Cricket central contract, his IPL side Gujarat Titans and endorsement deals.

The maximum salary possible among New Zealand’s 20 top players is NZ$523 396 ($313 880) plus match fees worth up to NZ$10 250 ($6 146) per Test match.


The Afghanistan Cricket Board does not publish details of central contracts but some media reports claimed Mohammad Nabi is paid $8 400 a month while star spinner Rashid Khan receives a modest $4 800.

Rashid, however, is a multi-millionaire due to his regular availability in T20 franchise leagues.

He made $1.8 million from his contract with Gujarat in the IPL last season.


Media reports claim skipper Scott Edwards is on a retainer of $100 000 with the non-Test playing nation while highly-rated all-rounder Bas de Leede receives $45 000.

By Garrin Lambley © Agence France-Presse