New cricket contracts not far away: Clarke
Test and one-day captain Michael Clarke is confident the Australian cricket pay dispute will be resolved shortly and says the last thing the players want is to strike.
Talk of industrial action has circulated due to the impasse over negotiations on player payments between Cricket Australia and the Australian Cricketers’ Association and is believed to be an option if a new deal isn’t reached by June 30.
The dispute has also prevented state teams and Big Bash franchises from signing and recruiting players for next season.
Clarke, who left Sydney on Thursday to lead the Australian one-day team on their tour of England and Ireland, was optimistic a resolution could be reached soon.
“Hopefully it will be sorted sooner rather than later for all parties,” Clarke said at Sydney Airport on Thursday.”
“I think there’s a meeting scheduled tomorrow between (CA cricket manager) Pat Howard and (ACA chief executive) Paul Marsh.
“The ACA and Cricket Australia have been working a lot together over the past few months to try and get this done so I guess from the players side of things we are really keen to get it done.
“The last thing we want to do is go on strike. I don’t want to miss any cricket for Australia to be honest, but I think its best for everybody the sooner it gets done the better.”
One of the major sticking points is believed to be the introduction of a performance-based pay scale.
“I believe our contracts are already performance-based,” Clarke said.
“In regards to that we have 25 contracted players – 90 per cent of those guys are on one-year contracts so if you don’t perform in that 12 months you no longer have a contract, so you are looking for another job.
“I think the most important thing is we get what’s best for the game and I think we’re getting there.
“I think the ACA and Cricket Australia are working really well together. I think that relationship continues to get better.
“I’m really confident that something will be done in the next week or so.”© AAP 2013