Under fire Aussie cricketers win pay rises

Australia's professional cricketers have brokered a deal for annual pay rises and increased fees over the next four years.

Updated: February 25, 2007 10:52 IST
  • Total Shares
Melbourne:Australia's professional cricketers have brokered a deal for annual pay rises and increased fees over the next four years despite a disastrous start to the Ashes tour of England. Under the agreement signed today by Cricket Australia and the Australian Cricketers' Association, 25 players on elite national contracts will have their annual retainers increased by 5.78 per cent per annum until 2009. The retainers of more than 100 other players who have contracts with any of the six state associations will grow at an annual rate of 5.53 per cent over the same time. The minimum retainer for the top 25 players increases from 140,000 Australian dollars (USD 108,000) - excluding match payments, tour fees and endorsements - this season to Australian dollar 145,000 (USD 112,000) in 2005-2006. The retainers are based on a sliding scale depending on seniority. Cricket Australia chief executive James Sutherland said the pay deal will allow the game to reward Australia's international and domestic players with increased payments, "balanced with the ability to continue investing heavily in the game at grassroots level." Cricketers' Association chief executive Tim May said the new agreement acknowledged the players' contribution to the success of Australian cricket "both off and on the field." Deserved to be rewarded "Our players have worked hard and achieved great things for Australian cricket and they deserve to be rewarded for this success and the revenue growth that this success has created," May said in a statement. "By maintaining a 25 per cent share of Australian Cricket Revenue, players have an incentive to grow the game's revenues and satisfy and support sponsor initiatives," May said. Top-ranked Australia is under siege on and off the cricket pitches of England following four consecutive losses to open the Ashes tour, including a five-wicket upset to struggling Bangladesh in the limited-overs tri-series - considered Australia's worst ever defeat. The problems have extended off field. All-rounder Andrew Symonds was suspended for two matches and fined for participating in a late-night drinking session on the eve of the Bangladesh loss last weekend. Legspinner Shane Warne's alleged extramarital affair with a 25-year-old student has made front-page headlines in Britain's tabloid newspapers. Warne, whose career has been plagued by off-field controversies, has retired from limited-overs internationals but is expected to rejoin the Australian test squad for the five-match Ashes series against England starting late next month. Sutherland said Cricket Australia had dealt with Symonds appropriately, but he did not believe there was cause to sanction Warne. "There is a line that needs to be drawn somewhere about a player's private life and when a player is on duty," Sutherland said. "My view is the incident happened when Shane Warne has been released from his Cricket Australia contract and is currently playing for Hampshire." (AP)

For the latest Cricket news , Score, like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter and get the NDTV Cricket app for Android or iOS

Leave a comment