Jason Holder is one of the youngest West Indies captains © Getty Images
Jason Holder is one of the youngest West Indies captains © Getty Images

Melbourne: West Indies skipper Jason Holder has backed former England batsman Kevin Pietersen‘s suggestion that the ICC should come up with heftier Test contracts if they want to see star players opting for their national side rather than playing in lucrative Twenty20 leagues. Reflecting on Pietersen’s suggestions, the 24-year-old believes that it was possibly the only way to keep the longest-format of the cricket alive. “Obviously we’re in a situation where the money isn’t great for us at the moment and we’ve been in numerous battles for that but that’s beyond our control at this present time. We’ve just got to play cricket. At the end of the day hopefully somewhere along the line we can have an increasing pay and be paid a little bit better than at the moment,” Holder was quoted as saying by ESPNcricinfo. READ: Kevin Pietersen calls for better Test contracts to prevent players from deflecting to T20 leagues

Holder, who himself was a T20 lover, called on his country to strike a balance between different formats of the cricket. “I think we need to strike a balance,” Holder said. “I’m not knocking T20 cricket because I love T20 cricket myself, but we just need to find a way where the country comes first and then we are flexible in terms of allowing people to make money outside of international cricket. I don’t think we should be playing hard ball and deny people from going and playing, but there has to be a situation where we make international cricket our first priority.” READ: Australia vs West Indies 2015-16: Jason Holders expects bowlers to come out stronger

Despite seeing the continuous slump in the Test format, the skipper also called on his players to continue playing cricket to the best of their ability. Earlier, Pietersen, who is currently playing for the Melbourne Stars in the BBL, had opined that players would return to the Test cricket only if they would be offered more money than they receive for playing in T20 tournaments like the Indian Premier League (IPL) and the Big Bash League. READ: West Indies will aim to finish Australia tour on a high: Jason Holder

Pietersen’s comments came in the wake of West Indies star players like Chris Gayle, Keiron Pollard, Samuel Badree, Darren Sammy, Andre Russell and Dwayne Bravo opting to play in the BBL when their national side are struggling to compete against Australia, which are leading the three-match series 2-0.