Bangladesh’s upcoming tour of India, starting November 3, is now in doubt as the players of the national side called for a press conference in Dhaka and announced that they will not take part in any cricketing activities unless a 11-point demand made to the cricket board is met. This also means they will not partake in the ongoing National Cricket League season, as well as the upcoming camp for the tour of India.
Senior players like Shakib Al Hasan, Mahmudullah, Mushfiqur Rahim and Tamim Iqbal were all present at the press conference that also had a big group of first-class cricketers standing by in support.
”Beside age level cricketers 19,17,15 everybody in national team and domestic cricket is involved here and its starts from today. This is applicable from domestic cricket and first-class cricket to international cricket,” he added.
BCB CEO Nizamudin Chowdhury has vowed to discuss the situation with the board and resolve the problem soon. “We just came to know about it. We will discuss it in the board and try to resolve it as soon as possible. I don’t think it is anything like revolt. They are yet to tell us anything formally, but we are looking into the matter,” Chowdhury said.
The following are some of the demands:
– Resignation of the current president and secretary of the Cricketers Welfare Association of Bangladesh (CWAB) with immediate effect, after which the Bangladesh players will select who takes over the association.
– Dhaka Premier League, the domestic tournament i n Bangladesh, should not have salary cap. “We have been expressing our discontent for a long time. We get a very low amount as our remuneration from Dhaka league. We used to contact the club in our own way previously. Now, our demand is to go back to the previous model of the Dhaka league,” Mahmudullah said.
– BPL should be conducted in franchise-style, like it was before, instead of the revised BBL-type format and the local players should be paid on par with the foreign players. Recently the board had decided to do away with the franchise-based format after a fallout with the franchises, and turn to the Big Bash League model. “If you look at the other foreign leagues, cricketers can decide their own grade in the draft. We are also seeking this in BPL,” Mushfiqur Rahim said.
– Better remuneration at the first-class level. “Match fee for the First-class cricket should be increased to one lakh (BDT), which is now 35 thousand only, this is our fourth demand. At the same time, the salary of First-class cricketers also should be increased by 50 per cent. A first-class cricketer gets only 1500 taka as the daily allowance. I don’t think this is enough for a cricketer in order to get a healthy lifestyle. At the same time, we are demanding to increase the travel allowance. We will be happy if BCB ensures the air tickets for travelling for the First-class cricketers around the country,” Shakib said.
– An increase in the number of players in the central contract list and an increase in salaries. While making this demand, Emanul Haque jr. complained that the salaries have been stuck at the same amount for the last three years.
– Tamim Iqbal also made a remuneration-related demand. He said: “We have to respect the local coaches, physios, trainers and groundsman. They get really a little amount of salary at the end of the month.”
– To have more domestic cricket tournaments, besides the one 50-over event – the Dhaka Premier League – and the T20 tournament – the Bangladesh Premier League.
– The players have also called for a calendar for domestic cricket so they can prepare better.
– Uniformity in timing of payments made to the players for BPL and DPL. Ten teams in the DPL have paid their players on time, but the Brothers Union Club – a team in the DPL – have only cleared 40 percent of the fees due to their players. “We have gone to the board several times and as a national cricketers we don’t think we deserve this kind of treatment,” Junaed Siddique said.
– Players should be allowed to play more than two overseas franchise-based league. Two years ago, BCB had come up with a rule that their national side players would get NOCs for only two overseas franchise-based league.