Cricket West Indies (CWI) is facing a severe cash crunch due to which it has been unable to pay the match fees to its cricketers (international and domestic) since January 2020. Also Read - Lockdown 5.0: Centre Moves Towards Unlock 1.0 But These States Extend Lockdown
While the men’s team is yet to be paid fees for the home limited-overs series against Ireland (3 ODIs and 3 T20Is), their women counterpart are still awaiting the dues for the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup in Australia where they played four matches. Also Read - Aviation Minister, Approached by Those Wishing to go to UAE, Says 'Will Take You There Once They Lift Curbs'
Even the cricketers playing domestic competitions have been unpaid. A majority of them haven’t been paid their mach fees for 2020 West Indies Championship, a regional four-day competition. The tournament was cancelled in March with two of the 10 rounds still to be played. Also Read - Playing in Front of Empty Stands Won't Affect my Performance: Sandesh Jhingan
West Indies Players’ Association (WIPA) secretary Wayne Lewis has confirmed the news saying the contracted regional players have received their allowances but match fees is still outstanding.
“The players who are contracted, their monthly salary (and allowances) are up-to-date,” Lewis told ESPNcricinfo. “The problem we are having is the retained players in the regional first-class competition have not been paid their match fees for the eight rounds that have been played so far.”
In West Indies, regional players are given contracts in two categories. The first includes 90 players who are on a monthly retainers with six franchises and are further divided into four categories. The second set comprises players who are paid on match-to-match basis. Apart from the allowances, all players irrespective of their categories, are paid $16,00 per match.
CWI chief executive officer Johnny Grave said the board will “ensure the money is paid as quickly as possible”.
“Cricket West Indies is facing a tough time financially,” Grave told ESPNcricinfo. “Whilst all of our contracted players have received their salaries and allowances, and some players have received prize money and match fees, there is still money that is outstanding and we are trying to settle these player payments as a priority.”
Gravres revealed he has personally mailed all players apologising for the delay and said he’s grateful for their patience and support.
The main reason behind the financial turmoil, Graves says, is the loss the board suffered in 2018 when they hosted Sri Lanka and Bangladesh. “When we hosted Sri Lanka and Bangladesh we made a US $22 million loss.”The media rights contract paid us less than a million dollars for those two tours,” he said.
They were able to clear the dues for 2019 because of the home series against England and India last year.