Australia may ‘not have a team for Ashes’, warns Warner

Melbourne [Australia], May 15 : This summer's Ashes series could see Australia without their top players after vice-captain David Warner declared that the team are prepared to forego the same and turn to domestic Twenty20 tournaments to make up financial losses if pushed out of contract after June 30 - when Cricket Australia has threatened to stop payments.

Cricket Australia had last week threatened that players would not be paid beyond June 30, the date of expiry of their current five-year financial deal, if they don't accept the governing body's new proposed offer.

The major reason behind the ACA's opposition is CA's proposal to scrap a shared revenue model for player payments, which has been in place for nearly 20 years.

Under CA's proposal, only male international players would have the chance to share in any surplus revenue, while other domestic male players and women at both domestic and international level would have to settle for fixed amounts which would not fluctuate according to the game's income.

Hitting back at the threat, Warner said the players are united to reject CA's proposal and that they would not "buckle at all" in their pay row with their national board.

The 30-year-old further noted that cricket's marketplace offer both international and domestic players plenty of opportunities to play T20 matches elsewhere if CA maintained its hard-line stance.

"If it gets to the extreme they might not have a team for the Ashes.I really hope they can come to an agreement ..we don't really want to see this panning out like that where we don't have a team [and] we don't have cricket in the Australian summer," the Sydney Morning Herald quoted Warner as saying.

"It is up to CA to deal with the ACA [Australian Cricketers Association]. It's obviously in their hands," he added. Warner insisted that all of the players felt the same way and, therefore, they would stick together over the matter.

"We won't buckle at all, we are standing together and very strong, and as you can see from all the people that have spoken so far, we are all on the same wavelength ..we want a fair share and the revenue-sharing model is what we want, so we are going to stick together until we get that," Warner said.

"We are not going to shy away; we are just going to stick together," he added. Last week, CA had offered its players multi-year contracts for the next three years in an attempt to lure key Australian players skip the cash-rich Indian Premier League (IPL).

As per reports, Pat Howard, Cricket Australia's newly re-signed executive general manager of team performance, had individually approached Test skipper Steve Smith, vice-captain David Warner and fast bowlers Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood and Pat Cummins in recent weeks with verbal offers of three-year deals rather than standard one-year central contracts on the condition that they skip the IPL.

Australia are slated to play five-match Ashes Test series against England, beginning November 23 at the Gabba.

Source: ANI