Bangladesh news April 21, 2017

Bangladesh players want payment parity with other countries

Bangladesh's top cricketers get even lower salary than their counterparts in Zimbabwe and Ireland even though the BCB earns more from ICC revenues and its own deals with broadcasters

The match fees for Bangladesh players per Test match has seen a 76% rise compared to the previous year © AFP

After a season of unprecedented progress and results, Bangladesh's cricketers are set to be duly rewarded with a pay raise for 2017. The decision, which has reportedly been reached after several discussions between the BCB high-ups and senior players in the last few weeks, will be approved at Saturday's board meeting. But it is understood not all parties are entirely happy with the new pay packet.

ESPNcricinfo has learned that some players voiced their disappointment with the 2016 annual payment as they believed it was not up to international standards, particularly at a time when the team has been progressing rapidly. The general mood is that while they know they can't be paid as much as centrally contracted players from India, Australia and England, they want to be on par, in 2017, with players from Sri Lanka, West Indies and New Zealand at least. They have communicated this to their bosses, backed by numbers, which has resulted in a better pay package for this year.

Let alone Sri Lanka or West Indies, the reality is that Bangladesh's top cricketers get even lower salary than their counterparts in Zimbabwe and Ireland. Annually, the highest-paid Zimbabwe player gets $66,000 (the lowest being $36,000) and the highest-paid Ireland player gets $75,000 (the lowest being $18,000). Even if Bangladesh's top players get $60,000 per year in 2017, it is far less than lower-ranked cricket teams.

While there might be different economic situations and living standards in these three countries, Bangladesh are at a distinctly better position in cricket than Zimbabwe and Ireland. The BCB earns more than the boards of Zimbabwe and Ireland from the ICC revenues and its own deals with broadcasters. Bangladesh are, obviously, also a higher-ranked side in Tests and ODIs than Ireland and Zimbabwe.

The BCB is, perhaps, not going to pay a higher amount all of a sudden because of the scale they have maintained in the last decade.

The players refused to comment on the matters, and are said to be satisfied with their 2017 salary increments. The contentment, however, is only because there has been an increase for this year rather than the payment standard that is being sought.

Players in BCB's A-plus category, the highest grade among the centrally contracted players' salary structure, are going to earn $60,000 in 2017 compared to $37,500 in 2016. This is a 60% increase after the same category's pay rose by 25% in 2016 compared to 2015 ($30,000).

For players in the second category, the new salary will be $40,000, a 33.3% increase from the $30,000 they made in 2016. For those in the third category, the revised amount will be $25,000 from $15,000, and for the lowest grade, the salary will rise from $11,250 to $15,000 per year.

Match fees has also been bumped up, with an appearance in a Test match giving a player a $4,300, a 76% rise from $2,440 they received in the previous year. For an ODI, a player will now get $2,500 from $1,210 while in T20Is, they will get $1,250 from $915 in 2016. Still, their 2016 Test match fee was less than that of most of their counterparts except Zimbabwe.

In ODIs, the format in which they have made the most progress, Bangladesh players were paid only more than Zimbabwe and Ireland in 2016 while the other major nations were paid a lot more. Over the last decade too, the pay increase in match fees has not been too significant. In 2005, they got $1,000 per Test and $500 per ODI.

Mushfiqur Rahim: "If the national players could play in the BPL and Dhaka League, we could get more financial benefits" © Raton Gomes/BCB

Some in the BCB believe that players should earn as they perform, meaning higher match fees in all three formats. They also feel that in the separate categories, many players earn salaries without actually playing for Bangladesh as they are chosen on the previous year's performance. The size of the group of centrally contracted players has also been discussed and it is likely that a smaller number of players will be included this year.

Some also argue that the Bangladesh players are better off than their counterparts in many other countries because of the amount they earn from their domestic tournaments like the Dhaka Premier League and the BPL. But these payments are for a single tournament every year, which they don't play for more than six to eight weeks in a year. The rest of their time is under the BCB's umbrella, playing different formats in international cricket.

The BCB does provide bonuses, which has evolved from being rewards for building partnerships and bowling with more consistency to being paid $125,000 (for the whole team) for their recent success in Sri Lanka.

After signing for Legends of Rupganj in the Dhaka Premier League earlier this month, Mushfiqur Rahim had said that he expected more from the BCB having played for Bangladesh for more than a decade.

"Both the clubs and the national side take care of us," Mushfiqur said. "We stay busy with the national team for eight to 10 months a year. If the national players could play in the BPL and Dhaka League, we could get more financial benefits. We play for the national team more for pride. If the benefit for playing in the national team could have been a bit more, it would have helped. Many of us have been playing for the national side for 10-11 years, and still feel that we don't have a lot of things. We have appealed to the board and surely they will look into that."

Mushfiqur's sentiment is justified, but a current Bangladesh player hardly gets the time to appear for his DPL club, which is more secured and has assured payments than what he gets from the BPL franchise. But hardly in the last ten years has a DPL edition been held with the full availability of the Bangladesh players. Moreover, Mushfiqur feeling a bit left out even is an honest admission from someone who has served his national team for more than a decade now. He has seen around the world what players of his level are being paid by their boards.

So why not him?

Mohammad Isam is ESPNcricinfo's Bangladesh correspondent. @isam84

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • casusf6370130 on April 24, 2017, 9:26 GMT

    For once I agree with BD players. You need to give incentives to get performance. If payout is good, the concentration on commercial tournaments will get reduced and focus will be shifted to national side of the game. Whatever is BD performance in international cricket, the team represent the best lot selectors can pick. BD cricket performance needs to be improved a lot - this can be one step towards it.

  •   Karthik Eyan on April 24, 2017, 8:50 GMT

    I am supporting this pay rise request., once more step towards bangldes winning the next worldcup .

  •   Shakib S Rahman on April 24, 2017, 1:15 GMT

    From Bangladesh perspective the amount is quite a lot...And the amount they get from BPL, Dhaka league is also quite a big amount.

  • Ramana on April 23, 2017, 13:27 GMT

    BD players surely need to be paid better. They have a huge fan base and foreign teams do visit the country, so gate receipts shud be good. TV rights also wl provide good revenue. BD has a much bigger economy than SL, West Indies or Zimbabwe. And has better stability and economic prospects. It can expect to enjoy a much larger revenue base on sustainable basis. Top BD players shud surely get at least $200,000 each ??!!

  • Shah on April 22, 2017, 20:04 GMT

    SAIFULLAH FAROOQUI: If that so really then PAK should play with associates only as well must play in PAK against PAK only

  • Golam on April 22, 2017, 12:11 GMT

    Money money money .... is that all that our players are going after ? ....what about their achivements ?? They never own a single trophy ever just keep playing & win something then you can talk about your money //

  • showka7038530 on April 22, 2017, 10:27 GMT

    Bangladeshi players do deserve pay rise because it is they who bring in the revenue. Simple as that!

  • yadava5614172 on April 22, 2017, 10:05 GMT

    Bd should utilize their resources.A good t20 or odi doesn't mean that he is good for test.Another point is just seniority shouldn't be criteria to play ever game. In t20 Bd needs batsmen who could hit big shots (rahim shouldn't be playing).It is really good for BD that mortaza has retired from t20...honestly he was weak link in the team.Performers of domestic tournaments should be considered otherwise what's the point of these BPL? ?? BD problem is they love their star players so much that they think they can do anything.If Bd move on from players like Mushfiqur, mortaza in t20 and players like mahmudullah in test.And give chance to player irrespective of age (who has performed) then everything will get better. I as a fan of cricket and non-bangladeshi I noticed that bd has either won games comphrensively or lost by close margins (although many games) that shows the weak links maybe 1 or 2 players in team who is not upto the mark of intl level.some players looks assured of place.

  • Nimrod on April 22, 2017, 10:04 GMT

    don't understand why those BD players need the pay rise. They are already earning enough from BCB and BPL.

  • yadava5614172 on April 22, 2017, 9:16 GMT

    Bangladesh should increase match fee and central contract fee but set higher criteria to retain those central contracts. For example:what has mahmudullah done in test for Bangladesh? ?to get grade A contract. Young players who has won games are given C&D contract. Sarkar as been biggest match winner for Bangladesh in odi&t20 and now he is slowly developing himself as test player as well...he is not given A or B.Mominul is another good player who deserves higher grade contract. Reason for Bangladesh being ranked below Afghanistan: 1)Mushfiqur rahim has been awful t20 player but still he keeps on playing becoz he is senoir player. 2) player like mashrafe who is neither good bowler nor batsman keeps on playing even once he said he didn't enjoy this format! !...Still he played and when he retired everyone got emotional and don't want him to go? ??why? ? If fan set their expectations high and think about results rather than worshipping individuals bd will improve further and quickly...

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