London:The Professional Cricketers Association (PCA) for England and Wales has warned that swift action was needed to protect international cricket from "unsustainable" fixture scheduling.
The PCA's Chief Executive Sean Morris said the administrators could still avert these troubles if they took immediate steps.
"For years players associations have been telling the administrators that the schedules were unsustainable and I fear we are seeing the initial cracks of what will be a major challenge to the game, one which those in charge could have averted if they had heeded the words from the players.
"If they take swift action across the international game, they can still avert these troubles" Morris wrote in the November issue of The Wisden Cricketer magazine.
Morris said urgent action was needed to ensure that the nternational 'product' remained the pinnacle of the game.
"Until now there has not been a rival to the international game and arguably this has seen complacency creep in, with the boards squeezing out every last drop of revenue regardless of the impact on quality, not to mention the players themselves", he said.
"But with the rise of the Indian Premier League and other domestic competitions, which now have the backing to attract the top players, there is a real threat to internationals. It is time that administrators heed our warnings and understand that less is, in fact, more," Morris said.
According to Morris, replacing some 50-over One-Day internationals with Twenty20 fixtures could be part of the answer.
"The solution has to lie in scheduling fewer matches, ensuring the product is the highest quality, which will make marketing and selling the matches more successful. The ICC should refine the sheer volume of 50-over internationals while looking into opportunities to schedule the more popular Twenty20 cricket in place of part of the ODI schedule.
"A remodelled Future Tours Programme with less cricket will create more recovery time and, importantly, preparation time for the players, so creating the chance to protect, then enhance the status of the internationals," he argued.