West Windies players threaten strike action

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President of the WICB, Dave Cameron.
President of the WICB, Dave Cameron.

Nation News – A potential strike by West Indies’ cricketers is looming less than three weeks after the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) and the West Indies Players Association (WIPA) signed a landmark memorandum of understanding/collective bargaining agreement (MOU/CBA).

NATION SPORT investigations yesterday revealed that the WICB had been warned of a possible withdrawal of players’ services for tomorrow’s first One-Day International against India in Kochi.

The threat stems from various clauses of the new MOU/CBA with which the players are unhappy.

Well placed sources revealed that several Caribbean cricketers, including top international players, were not privy to many key sections of the agreement that was signed on September 18 by WICB President Dave Cameron and WIPA President and Chief Executive Officer Wavell Hinds at the Accra Beach Hotel.

At the centre of the players’ issues is the decisions taken that significantly result in a decline in income. It is understood that under the terms of the new MOU/CBA, a portion of the revenue that was previously divided among West Indies players would now be shared by the wider membership of WIPA.

Additionally, the players would no longer be entitled to a 25 per cent share of income the WICB secured from International Cricket Council events.

It is believed that the players said in their correspondence to the WICB that if the issues were not resolved in short order, they would be prepared to take drastic action.

When contacted last night, Cameron neither confirmed nor denied that the WICB had received correspondence from the players outlining their intention to take imminent action and instead referred NATIONSPORT to the Head of WIPA.West Indies

“We have a signed agreement with the Players’ Association. If there is some issue within the players’ ranks, that is another matter,” Cameron said.

Efforts to reach Hinds proved futile. Prior the signing of the new MOU/CBA, the last time the WICB and the WIPA signed a similar agreement was in 2003.

Cameron described the signing as a “watershed moment” and a “new partnership which will take regional cricket forward” while Hinds said it “created a stable environment” for the players to play and demonstrate their skills.

The last time West Indies players withdrew their services from an international match was in 2009 for a home series against Bangladesh.

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