Sri Lanka players will tour England despite contract dispute

There has been a long dispute between Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) and players regarding new contracts. Over the weekend, there were reports suggesting that the upcoming tour of England could be in jeopardy as players refuse to sign the tour contracts. However, the recent developments suggest that the players have refused to sign new pay contracts within the new deadline of June 3 that the board provided on Saturday, but they are ready to play in the upcoming tour of England.

According to the lawyer representing the cricketers, they did not agree with a new performance-based pay scheme designed by a cricket board panel that includes former head coach Tom Moody. The statement from the lawyer said that players are ready to play the matches without contracts.

“Players refused to sign annual and tour contracts until the pay dispute is resolved.”

“Even when players are refused pay, they will play for the country because that is their main objective.”

The Sri Lankan board has proposed a new performance-based pay structure, former captain Angelo Mathews and current Test captain Dimuth Karunaratne have seen the biggest cuts in their salary. The new salary range for these senior players is between $70,000 to $100,000.

Star batsman, Dananjaya de Silva was set to be the highest-paid at $100,000. Mathews’s annual fee fell from $130,000 a year to $80,000, while Karunaratne was offered $70,000, a drop of $30,000. Both the players have rejected the new fees proposal.

SLC president Shammi Silva said last month that he believed players had the potential to earn more and help Sri Lanka improve in the ICC rankings. Sri Lanka is ranked eighth out of ten Test nations, ninth in one-day internationals, and eighth in the Twenty20 rankings.

As of now, it does look like the tour of England will go ahead, but the Sri Lankan Cricket board will have to find an agreement with players to end the dispute. The Lankans are scheduled to tour England this month for three one-day internationals and three T20I matches. The tour will begin with the T-20 series on June 23 and will conclude with the ODI series on July 4. The team is set to will leave for England on June 9.

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