West Indies players demand apology from cricket board

July 16th, 2009 - 9:18 pm ICT by IANS  

Port of Spain, July 16 (IANS) The crisis is West Indies cricket is getting deeper every day with the West Indies Players’ Association (WIPA) demanding an apology from the country’s board.
Thirteen leading West Indies players, including captain Chris Gayle, have gone on strike and boycotted the first Test against Bangladesh over pending contract issues. The West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) struggled to get a second string side that lost the match.

The WICB has asked the rebel players to apologies or face non-selection for the Champions Trophy in South Africa in September.

In retaliation, the WIPA has send a strongly worded letter to the WICB and demanded apology for mismanagement in the affairs of the board, reports the Trinidad Guardian.

The letter was laced with sarcasm and said: “We apologies for demanding that our members play with a contract clearly outlining the terms and conditions.

“For insisting that all contracts be negotiated by WIPA prior to their being offered to the players.

“For asking the WICB to honour the agreement and pay the medical treatment when players sustain injuries.

“For asking that the WICB honour the 2007-2008 agreement and compensate the players who have been injured.

“For asking the WICB to deposit funds it had deducted from the players’ salaries and which it failed to pay to the Players Provident Fund Account (Pension Plan) for almost a year.

“For asking the WICB to reimburse players who sometimes have to purchase their own airline tickets while on duty for the West Indies.

“For not having training camps and specialist camps for the preparation of the team.

“For accepting to play in a series against England at a time of year when no other team has ever played.

“For asking that the WICB not sell players’ intellectual property and image rights without permission.”

The Players, the association said, “would be willing to apologies if the players had:

“Lost Five (5) million US Dollars in the sanctioning of a one-off international 20/20.

“Lost three (3) million US Dollars as a result of breach of agreement.

“Spent one (1) million US Dollars in the courts in London unsuccessfully defending a legal action.

“Had to defend several other claims for breach of contract, including one where the estimated loss of revenue is $500,000.00 US Dollars per year.

“Lost almost US $10 million dollars in almost one year for breach of agreements with third parties.”

“A perusal of the above should indicate from where the apology should come,” it added.

WIPA chief executive Dinanath Ramnarine said the striking players are united in their stance.

“Although they want to play, they’re not going to back down under this pressure,” he said.

WICB vice-president Dave Cameron said he was not aware of the latest development, but made it clear that any player who wanted to make himself available for the second Test would be considered for selection in the Champions Trophy.

“I cannot say if any of the players changed their minds they would be back into the team for the second Test,, but I think that they should be given a look at,” Cameron said.

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