Melbourne:Top Australian cricketers are gearing up for a war against its board to demand more pay and less work.
Some of the players feel that Cricket Australia (CA) contracts are too demanding and want to ease the obligations when the players and the board meet for a two-day meeting to be held soon, reports the Herald Sun.
All-rounder Andrew Symonds in May offered the CA to cut his hefty contract by $250,000 for a reduction in media work and appearances with CA sponsors.
Contracted players have to take part in 22 sponsorship appearances for CA and their states in a year, with no more than four in a month.
The daily reported that some players feel that the obligations are too much considering the crowded international and domestic seasons. But for CA the obligations are an important part of attracting sponsors which contribute millions of dollars to the game and bankroll the salaries of the players.
Australian Cricketers' Association (ACA) chief executive Paul Marsh said sponsorship obligations have been an ongoing issue and will be a hot topic at the two-day meeting, expected to be held in two weeks.
"That's been an ongoing issue. How do you fit it all in between games? Players understand the sponsors are important. It's about finding the balance," Marsha was quoted as saying.
Marsh declined to comment on whether the players wanted a pay rise or an increase in the 25 per cent cut they receive from CA's revenue.
International and state players currently share in a quarter of all revenue, with CA recording total revenue of more than $146 million in 2007-08 - up $26 million from a year earlier.
The top-25 CA listed players enjoy annual retainers of between $160,000 to about $800,000 plus match fees and prize money.
But it's understood the ACA will ask for a bigger cut, in part because of exploding television contracts and the rise of Twenty20 cricket - a move that is likely to anger CA powerbrokers.
CA's multi-million dollar deal with the Commonwealth Bank prevents the players from promoting any kind of financial companies.