Digicel sponsorship may need to be reviewed

West Indies board forced into contract climbdown

Cricinfo staff

October 10, 2006

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Celebration time for Dwayne Bravo © Getty Images
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The West Indies Cricket Board has backed down over its decision to remove Dwayne Bravo from its list of players offered retainer contracts after pressure from the ICC and FICA, the international players' association.

The website caribbeancricket.com quotes sources close to the board as saying that Bravo, Daren Ganga and Runako Morton had been added to the list published in July.

Bravo was not offered a retainer contract because of his deal with bMobile, a direct competitor of Digicel, the board's official sponsor. But representatives from the ICC and FICA informed the board that the existing contract could not be a factor as an agreement signed by the board stated that "a player may have and shall be entitled to fulfil obligations under pre-existing Player Endorsement Contracts". Ganga also has a private endorsement deal with bMobile that will remain in effect while he is contracted to the WICB.

WIPA, the West Indies players' association, had been deeply unhappy that an agreement it had with the board stating that at least 10 retainer contracts would be issued was ignored when only seven - plus Bravo - were unveiled. As a result of pressure, the board had little choice but to add the three named today.

The WICB has repeatedly tried to find a way round the agreement regarding pre-existing contracts and has been hauled back into line every time. It might well be that the board now has no choice but to go back and renegotiate its multi-million dollar deal with Digicel as it may have given undertakings it can now not adhere to. Given its financial predicament, the board is in no position to lose any more income, but there have been deep reservations about the terms of the contract from the off.

Contracted players Dwayne Bravo, Shivnarine Chanderpaul, Corey Collymore, Fidel Edwards, Daren Ganga, Chris Gayle, Brian Lara, Runako Morton, Denesh Ramdin, Ramnaresh Sarwan.

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

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