Players will boycott an Australia A tour of South Africa this month unless a new pay deal is agreed by Cricket Australia, the Australian Cricketers’ Association said on Sunday.
The players’ union held an emergency meeting in Sydney where they decided to take action for the tour beginning on July 12 unless a new Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed by Friday.
The ACA further escalated the bitter dispute after failing to reach an agreement with CA on a new MOU before Friday’s deadline after months of protracted negotiations.
This leaves players unemployed and threatens fixtures including this year’s prestige Ashes series.
“They don’t intend to tour but the reality is they don’t fly out of the country until Friday,” ACA chief executive Alistair Nicholson told reporters of the Australia A tour.
“So the players are going to go into camp as planned and hopefully we can make some progress with regards to the MoU.
“There would need to be a significant breakthrough on the key issue of the revenue sharing model.”
The players’ union said the decision was done following legal advice examining the MOU and mandated player contracts.
The ACA also warned that upcoming Australian tours to Bangladesh and India were also under threat.
“Players expressed a strong desire to tour both Bangladesh and India and urged CA to support them by renewing an MOU on fair terms, allowing the tours to proceed,” the ACA said.
“However, due to the fact of unemployment and the resolution and an absent MOU there are no professional cricketers presently obliged or available to tour.”
Australia’s Test tour to Bangladesh is from August and the one-day international series is in India in September.
There was no word from the meeting on the home Ashes series against England later this year.