Cricket Australia pay dispute: Why 200 players are now unemployed

Cricket Australia said that there would be no eleventh hour breakthrough in a bitter pay dispute with the Australian Cricketers Association, leaving more than 200 leading cricketers uncontracted and the fate of future tournaments in limbo.

By: Express Web Desk | Updated: June 30, 2017 10:38 pm
australia cricket, australia pay dispute, cricket australia Steve Smith and David Warner have been very vocal during the pay dispute. (Source: Reuters)

Last November, Cricket Australia and Australian Cricketers Association begin MoU negotiations over a new revenue sharing model. A month later, the talks meet their first breakdown. The players reject the fixed wages and an additional bonus model offered by CA. Talks between CA and ACA fall out and hence begins a pay dispute.

Seven moths later, 200 Australia cricketers are set to be unemployed as the pay dispute continues and players do not agree to CA’s revenue breakdown model. As the deadline for MoU — June 30 — is missed, CA maintains its stand and says that the money initially to be paid to contracted players will now go to grassroot level.

The first breakdown of the talks was when a pregnancy-of-female-players clause was leaked to the media. CA had a clause that while men can sign multi-year contracts, the female players need to sign one-year contract and they have to reveal, to the best of their knowledge, if they are pregnant. From July, these players, men and women, will be out of contracts.

The governing body of cricket in Australia has also banned players from playing any other cricket until the matter is resolved and if a player violates the rule, he or she faces suspension as per ICC rule.

There are many negatives from this dispute including doubts over Australia’s future matches. The upcoming tours of Bangladesh, India and South Africa are in doubt and so is the Ashes series.

As most Australia players are now out of contracts, it is understood that none of them will be playing until the MoU is signed. Last month, Warner had said that CA might be without players for the Ashes if the matter is not resolved.

Earlier, Mitchell Starc had said that no player will accept the multi-year contracts of CA. The body had offered five players — Smith, Warner, Starc, Pat Cummins and Josh Hazlewood — multi-year contracts.

Now, as on July 1, Australian cricketers will be out of contracts. They have called a emergency meeting on Sunday to chalk out the plan for the future and decide if they will boycott the South Africa tour which begins on July 12. Cricketers’ Brand, a commercial wing of ACA founded on May 23, will take care of players’ intellectual property.

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