Melbourne: Cricket Australia (CA) and the Australian Cricketers' Association (ACA) are heading towards a possible confrontation if the board chooses to follow Don Argus's key recommendations that it stops paying players a fixed 26 percent share of total revenue.
The Age reported that ACA in its written response to the Argus review has refused to consider sacrificing the revenue-sharing model. The ACA has fought with CA for more than a decade ago for a more performance-based pay system.
"What's been overlooked in my view is the fact that our payment system is already extremely performance based. Player retainer values fluctuate from year to year based on player performances - and these fluctuations can be considerable. Players come on and go off contract lists and it would be fair to say that no other role in Australian cricket is subject to such cut-throat performance measures," ACA chief executive Paul Marsh wrote to the members.
Marsh said that it is important to note that player payments are not just a function of on-field performance.
"When signing contracts, players hand over various commercial rights to CA that CA exploit for the financial gain of Australian cricket. The players also agree to a range of other significant obligations and restrictions. There has to be a fixed value attached to this that isn't dependent on on-field performance.
"Quite simply the ACA and our members won't entertain a move away from the percentage share of revenue model we've had since 1999 nor our current 26 per cent share. We believe this has worked very well for Australian cricket and the players for the past 12 years and is not a reason for the recent decline in our on-field performances," he said.
Marsh said any changes to the contract system would be debated by ACA in the next round of pay negotiations, which could start as early as November.
"We are open to discussing how we can improve these models to make Australian cricket stronger but moving away from our percentage share of revenue model isn't open for discussion," he said.