Australian cricketers accused of "jeopardising the Ashes" as judge proposed to solve pay dispute

Joe Hall
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Warner: Not our fault if no deal is done (Source: Getty)

Australia's cricketers have been accused of "jeopardising the Ashes" in a row over pay with governing body Cricket Australia.

Players' body the Australian Cricketers' Association (ACA) have been told by Cricket Australia that if no agreement can be found in long-running negotiations next week, talks will be taken to arbitration for a judge to decide.

There are currently 230 unemployed cricketers in the country as Cricket Australia and the ACA have failed to renew a memorandum of understanding, with the ACA rejecting the governing body's proposal of salary increases but scrapping a pre-existing revenue sharing model between the two groups.

The dispute remains unresolved just four months before the Ashes series in Australia starts in November.

"We feel that what has been proposed actually jeopardises not only the Bangladesh tour but in turn the Indian tour that is upcoming and beyond that even — dare I say it — the Ashes tour," said Cricket Australia chief executive James Sutherland.

"We are proposing in the short term that both parties get together with really strong intent to get this deal sorted and hopefully by early next week we can have the situation resolved.

Read more: Chris Tremlett - Australia players right to dig in their heels in bid for fairer pay

"In the event it is not resolved, we are proposing that any residual matters not resolved be sent to arbitration."

James Sutherland Holds Press Conference On MOU With Australian Cricketers' Association
Cricket Australia James Sutherland (Source: Getty)

In response, the ACA said it wanted independent mediation to resolve the dispute rather than arbitration which it called "an adversarial process more akin to a court room".

Read more: Why Surrey cricket chief Richard Gould fears English players could follow their Australian counterparts and strike over pay

Vice-captain David Warner, who has been leading talks for the ACA, hit back on social media arguing that Cricket Australia had ignored their proposals.

"This baggy green means the world to me," wrote Warner on Instagram.

"Myself and all the other players female and male want to get out there and play. We offered $AUS30m (£18.3m) of our money to grassroots as a peace plan. It was ignored.

"We asked for mediation twice before and it was rejected. Now CA says there is a crisis. The players are unemployed and some are hurting financially but continue to train. Administrators all still being paid.

"How is it our fault no deal is done."

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