Chris Barrett, writing in the Sydney Morning Herald, says it was a discussion that Brett Lee had with English 'freelance' cricketer Andrew Flintoff that had persuaded Lee to retire from Test cricket.
Lee is no slouch when it comes to records, as this Australian fast bowler is fourth on the all-time list of Australian wicket-takers. Part of his decision not to attempt a comeback to Test Cricket is his concern over further serious injury.
Well-Being Australia chairman Mark Tronson, who has been cricket chaplain for 26 years, wrote an article in December last year on the need for maturing cricketers to make the most of their twilight years at this top level.
In that article he wrote: "It has also been suggested that there is no longer 'the Australian cricket team', rather there is now 'an Australian cricket team', or maybe 'several Australian cricket teams', referring to the different forms of the game."
The issue in M V Tronson's view is that today there are many arenas in professional cricket. In that previous article, he described the international cricket between nations; the 'one day' and '20-Twenty' type short games, and increasing variations on those; there is still the Sheffield Shield in Australia and County Cricket in England; and there are the professional Indian leagues, with players from a wide range of cricketing backgrounds being recruited.
This format may well spread elsewhere. The Federation International Cricketers Association (FICA) has proposed steps which recognises this reality.
Flintoff and now Lee may represent the beginning of a whole new wave of senior cricketers who are considering their options and what may be best for their immediate and long term future.
Last week Damien Martyn spoke of the 'freelance' cricketers having an obviously different agenda to those under contract to Cricket Australia. The 'freelances' seem to far more willing to travel to play in the IPL in India (terrorist threat situation) as that is their major course of contractual income.
These considerations to go 'freelance' may take into account some or all of the following factors, depending on their personal circumstances: their physical well-being, avoidance of known injuries, maximising their financial opportunities and/or the opportunity to enjoy more respite time at home and away from the game.
"The increasing emphasis on respite for professional cricketers is becoming a major factor in their decisions 'to play or not to play' in the national team, as senior cricketers find themselves at the other end of thirty," M V Tronson noted, whose ministry specialises in athletes respite.