Australian players celebrate a wicket during the fourth day of their second Test.
Australian players celebrate a wicket during the fourth day of their second Test. Aijaz Rahi

Cricket bodies fail to reach common ground over pay

CRICKET Australia's central contracting will be delayed by at least a month with pay talks between CA and the Australian Cricketers Association still at an impasse.

Contracts for Australia's top 20 players are usually announced on the first of April but no deals can be done because the current Memorandum of Understanding expires on June 30.

CA and the ACA are yet to embark on significant discussions about the next MOU with the governing body expected to issue its proposed pay deal to the players in the coming weeks.

The ACA remains frustrated that CA has yet to express reasons for wanting to move away from the revenue-sharing model which has been at the centre of the MOU for the past 20 years.


Cricket Australia chief executive James Sutherland looks on during a press conference in Hobart, Wednesday, Nov. 16, 2016. (AAP Image/Dave Hunt) NO ARCHIVING
Cricket Australia chief executive James Sutherland DAVE HUNT

The Association's chief executive Alastair Nicholson has been in India for the past week relaying updates to the Test players while CA boss James Sutherland has also been on the subcontinent.

ACA player relations manager Simon Katich also just returned from a stint in India as both a commentator and consulting coach for the Test team.

The former Test opener said as part of the new pay proposal CA should look to cap administrative costs to ensure maximum revenue is channelled not only to the players, but to grassroots cricket too.

"Cricket is thriving and that's a credit to all parties. But like any thriving business, administrative costs must be kept under control. Especially when there are far more pressing priorities," Katich said.

"A cap on administrative costs would be a good discipline for CA. And it would show the players that both fair remuneration for men and women, and investment in grassroots cricket were rightfully the game's top priorities.


**FILE** A Tuesday, Dec. 21, 2010 file photo of NSW cricketer Simon Katich arriving at the launch of the 2010-11 KFC Twenty 20 Big Bash at the Entertainment Quarter, Sydney. Cricket Australia has reprimanded the former Test opener Katich on Monday, Dec. 5, 2011, for his comments about captain Michael Clarke though is free to play for NSW. (AAP Image/Dan Himbrechts) NO ARCHIVING
Former Australian cricketer Simon Katich DAN HIMBRECHTS

"Already the players are receiving less and less of the game's revenue while you could also argue grassroots investment is far too low.

"Currently the male players share of revenue sits below 20 per cent, grassroots receives only 12 per cent and female players receive less than 1 per cent. That means there is an enormous 68 - 69 per cent of revenue kept at CA's discretion.

"So prudence demands that now is clearly the right time to put this cap in place."

The administrative spending cap is among several ideas from the ACA which also wants one, all-inclusive MOU for both male and female players, and a continuance of the revenue sharing deal.

Many players remain in cricketing limbo with a trade embargo on domestic contracts in place while talks on the pay deal continue, and that includes the central contracts.

The confirmed retirement of veteran batsman Adam Voges today has opened up at least one spot on the 20-man list, although room does need to be made for Test opener Matthew Renshaw and keeper Matthew Wade who were not included 12 months ago.