CA will seek arbitration in pay dispute

Cricket Australia Chief Executive James Sutherland has indicated that the board will seek third party arbitration if their dispute with the Australian Cricketer’s association is not resolved by next week.

The CEO called a press conference at the headquarters of Australian cricket in Melbourne on Thursday afternoon to update the media on the pay dispute.

The chief sticking point in talks thus far has been the impasse over revenue sharing with the players resolved to retaining the system while CA wants to free up the revenue for grassroots cricket.

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Sutherland told the gathered media: “We’re really at a stage now where we need to address this situation and cricket needs to get on with the game.

“The ACA has recently put forward some proposals in regards to a process through this, including contracting around players. We feel that what has been proposed actually jeopardises not only the Bangladesh tour but then in turn the Indian tour upcoming and beyond that even, dare I say it, the Ashes.

“We are proposing an alternative route through this. We have had discussions just today with the ACA about our proposal. Our proposal allows players to be contracted in the short term, and for a real focus that allows the fans of the game to have great confidence about not only tours proceeding but also the summer ahead.

“We’re proposing that in the short term 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.

“In the event that it’s not resolved at that time, we are proposing that any residual matters that haven’t been resolved are sent to arbitration and we’re prepared to accept whatever decision comes. In cricketing parlance, we’re prepared to accept the umpire’s decision and move on.”

Sutherland was eager to make the distinction between arbitration and mediation which had been proposed by the ACA earlier on in this process.

The CEO indicated that CA would likely look for a Supreme court judge willing to hear both sides of the argument and make a judgement on the matter.