David Warner of Australia in the field during a one-day international against Pakistan at the WACA in January.
David Warner of Australia in the field during a one-day international against Pakistan at the WACA in January. RICHARD WAINWRIGHT

Warner questions timing of Cricket Australia video

DAVID Warner says Cricket Australia has undermined the team's efforts to win the Champions Trophy after it posted an online video accusing players of taking money from grassroots cricket.

After two meetings last week, talks between CA and the Australian Cricketers Association were on a path towards negotiation for the next memorandum of understanding.

But on Tuesday night CA posted a video, recorded before the meetings, in which executive general manager and head negotiator Kevin Roberts picked holes in the ACA's pay proposal.

Roberts suggested, among other things, players "may not even be aware" that the revenue-sharing model takes money from junior cricket sponsorships and feeds that in to the player payment pool.

While keen to not lose focus ahead of Saturday's must-win clash against England at Edgbaston, Warner, who accused CA of telling "half-truths" in a tweet, said the timing of the video, and its contents, only added to player frustration.

"From our stance, it is quite disappointing. They obviously haven't thought about the process by which we have given back almost $30 million to grassroots cricket," Warner said in Birmingham.

"We're here to win. If CA wants us to win I don't think they would be releasing videos like that.

"For us, we've got an important game going on this week, and that's our focus. The MOU stuff can wait until after the tournament. For where we sit as players we've always said we have 100% support for the ACA to get to the table.

"We have been here putting it through social media and CA has been the guys trying to explain it via video. We're just sticking together as one, and all players around the country, and all we want it a fair share."

The ACA also reacted angrily to the CA video, calling it a re-hashing of previous "half-truths" and "mischaracterisations", and accused CA of sitting on $70 million in cash reserves while complaining about the under-funding of grassroots cricket.

The players union has said openly from the beginning it remains flexible and willing to change what constitutes cricket revenue it should share in, and that would include removing the junior cricket sponsorships.

The union was most angered because the video was posted after what it believed to be productive meetings, and an agreement the ongoing process would be "confidential, frank and non-binding".

But there was no agreement not to make any more public statements, although it is believed the latest CA video, the second in two weeks, is the last one.

It's not yet known if the video released this week will set back talks with more meetings having been scheduled between the two parties.

News Corp Australia


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