Port of Spain: The West Indies Players Association (WIPA) has given West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) chief executive Ernest Hilaire a seven-day ultimatum to apologise to their president Dinanath Ramnarine for remarks made at a stormy meeting in Jamaica last week.
Without detailing what the remarks were, WIPA said they were "defamatory" and accused the regional cricket governing body of engaging in "street tactics".
This follows a stinging statement from the WICB on Sunday accusing Ramnarine of "threatening action" against Hilaire during the meeting that had been called to resolve the Chris Gayle controversy.
The WICB also criticised the WIPA chief for "unprofessional conduct" during the same meeting and said they would no longer engage Ramnarine on issues unless there was a change in his behaviour.
"WIPA is confident and appreciative that its representatives are able to operate at all levels, deal with the give-and-take in tough negotiations and do not have to withdraw when the going gets tough," a WIPA statement on Monday quoted by the Caribbean Media Corporation (CMC) said.
"In that vein, the WIPA board is disappointed by WICB's street tactics in attempting to construe fervent negotiations as something more. Unequivocally, Ramnarine has not in any way or at any time acted unreasonably or in a manner that undermines his professionalism or commitment to getting the job at hand done."
"WIPA is satisfied with the report it has received from its representatives and members at the meeting and calls on Mr. Hilaire to make an unreserved and unconditional withdrawal and apology to Mr. Dinanath Ramnarine for the defamatory remarks he has made at the meeting within the next seven days."
It was not immediately clear what action WIPA would pursue if the deadline was not met by the WICB.
However, WIPA gave Ramnarine a huge vote of confidence, stressing that he remained the points-man to represent the organisation and said they hoped the WICB would continue to cooperate.
"The WIPA board wishes to make clear that it has complete confidence in its president and CEO Mr. Dinanath Ramnarine who continues to have full authority to represent WIPA in all matters," the release noted.
"Simply, Ramnarine's performance record speaks volumes. His dedication and successes in advocating players' rights speak for themselves. Moreover, he remains committed to constructively dialogue with the WICB on all matters as he has ably done in the past."
"WIPA fully expects that there will be no difficulty with the WICB dealing with any WIPA personnel since WIPA is prepared to deal with any WICB representatives and does deal with any WICB representatives even when WIPA considers that representative a bad choice whose conduct is unbecoming and expects reciprocity from the WICB."