Australia ‘A’ tour to SA in jeopardy

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July 3, 2017
Australia ‘A’ tour to SA in jeopardy

LEADERSHIP ROLE: Aussie Usman Khawaja

Australia’s players will boycott an ‘A’ team tour of South Africa later this month unless a new pay deal is struck with Cricket Australia beforehand, the Australian Cricketers’ Association (ACA) said yesterday.

An emergency meeting of players in a Sydney hotel decided that those selected for the Australia “A” tour of South Africa would gather in Brisbane today but only travel if a new Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) was agreed.

The previous MOU expired at midnight last Friday, leaving around 230 leading cricketers without contracts and the fate of future tours in limbo.

ACA chief executive Alistair Nicholson says: “They don’t intend to tour but the reality is they don’t fly out of the country until Friday.

“So the players are going to go into camp as planned and hopefully we can make some progress with regards to the MOU. There would need to be a significant breakthrough on the key issue of the revenue sharing model.”

Batsman Usman Khawaja, who was named as captain of the “A” squad that also included Test veterans Glenn Maxwell, Ashton Agar and Jackson Bird, says boycotting the tour would not be a decision taken lightly.

He explains: “Hopefully something can be resolved, but if it’s not, it’s a tough decision that sort of has to be made.

“Not to go is a sacrifice in some respects but we see the broader picture.”

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