West Indies contracts row July 9, 2009

West Indies players' body refuses to call off strike

Cricinfo staff
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Negotiations to end the current impasse surrounding player contracts have failed after the West Indies Players' Association (WIPA) refused a call by the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) to end its members' boycott of the first Test against Bangladesh .

The representatives of the two parties met in Port of Spain this morning, but the meeting lasted only 23 minutes. A release issued by the WICB stated that the board "impressed upon WIPA that it was not prepared, consistent with good industrial relations practices, to negotiate under duress, and insisted that before any good faith negotiations commenced, the players' strike would first have to end." But following WIPA's refusal, the meeting broke up.

However, the release also mentioned that the board, "as an act of good faith", was willing to pay its former players the sums it had offered to pay during previous negotiations with the WIPA.

Dave Cameron, Gerard Pinard and Derek Ali represented the WICB, while Dinanath Ramnarine and Ousman Ali were the WIPA representatives.

On Tuesday, the WIPA announced the original squad would boycott the Test because, as it claimed, the players hadn't received contracts for the last four tournaments. The board scrambled to get a second-string side ready with only a day left before the Test started. An inexperienced squad of 15, with nine uncapped players, was put together and the Test went on.

But on the sidelines, the two bodies continued fighting; the WIPA accused the board of not responding to its submission of the contracts and then going on penalise players for not signing them in time. Cameron, the WICB vice-president, on the other hand, said contracts had not been signed because of the WIPA's "unreasonable behaviour".