'Shocked and dismayed': Top Sri Lankan players lock horns with cricket board over contracts

WION Web Team
New Delhi, Delhi, India Published: May 22, 2021, 12:14 PM(IST)

File photo: Sri Lanka Cricket team. Photograph:( AFP )

Story highlights

Sri Lankan players issued a joint statement and said that they were “shocked and dismayed” by the SLC’s decision to go public with the specific payment details of players. “These disclosures amount to a grave security concern to each and every player,” they said in the statement.

Sri Lanka's top cricketers, including Test captain Dimuth Karunaratne, Dinesh Chandimal and Angelo Mathews, have refused to sign central contracts offered by the country's cricket board citing a lack of transparency in the manner in which categories of the contract have been allocated. 

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According to Sri Lanka Cricket, they offered 24 of its leading players contracts under four categories and that they had been given a deadline until June 3 to sign. As per these categories, six players come in the highest Category A, where they receive an annual pay ranging between $70,000 and $100,000. In this category, Dhananjaya de Silva will receive the highest pay ($100,000), whereas, other players will receive $70,000-80,000 each.

Sri Lankan players issued a joint statement and said that they were “shocked and dismayed” by the SLC’s decision to go public with the specific payment details of players. “These disclosures amount to a grave security concern to each and every player,” they said in the statement.

The chairman of the Cricket Advisory Committee of the SLC, Aravinda de Silva, told reporters that the cricket board was forced to make this tough decision based on the performances of the players. “We wanted to have key performance indicators for the players so that we could evaluate them,” de Silva said, adding that the new pay scheme was incentive-based.

However, the players have refused to take the entire blame for the poor performance in the game in recent years and said that the administrators and local structure were contributing factors to the country’s decline in the international rankings.

According to a Federation of International Cricketers’ Associations (FICA) report, a statement from the attorney representing nearly all the top Sri Lankan players said the remuneration proposed is one-third of what some other cricket-playing countries offer to their players. 

The controversy ahead of the India vs Sri Lanka series puts the tour in jeopardy. 

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