David Warner     Getty Images
David Warner Getty Images

Australia vice-captain David Warner has continued his verbal volley against Cricket Australia (CA) by asking them whether they want the national side to win the ongoing ICC Champions Trophy 2017. The 30-year-old’s comments came after the country’s cricket board released a video aimed at persuading the players to agree to give up the proposed revenue sharing model. In a video released by the CA, chief negotiator Kevin Roberts infuriated the Australian Cricketers’ Association (ACA) by contradicting their claims about what it costs to run the game. He also accused the players of wanting to take money out of junior cricket by demanding the revenue-sharing scheme to continue to remain part of the new Memorandum of Understanding (MoU).

Two-time winners Australia will now face England on Saturday at the Edgbaston knowing that a defeat or abandonment could end their campaign at the eight-team marquee event. Hitting back at Roberts, Warner claimed if CA would have wanted them to clinch victory, they would not have released such video.

“If CA want to try and help us win I think they wouldn’t be releasing videos like that. We have an important game coming up this week and that is our focus. The MoU can wait until after the game and the tournament,” Warner was quoted as saying by ESPNCricinfo. The video, which features Roberts contradicting the players’ union claims about the costs of running the game, was posted on-line and e-mailed to professional players in Australia.

While it may have been intended as clarification from CA’s part, Warner believes the timing of releasing the video was something that irritated the players. “It [the timing] is disappointing.”But I am not going to comment on what CA are trying to do. They obviously haven’t thought about the process. We’ve given back almost 30 million to grassroots cricket. As we’ve said, we just want a fair share but leave it [the negotiations] until after the games. We have 100% support with the ACA to get to the table with CA. All the players are sticking together as one”, Warner said.

The opener further reiterated that the players are completely focusing on their game at the moment and that they are united in their stand against the CA’s proposal. The pay dispute between CA and the ACA is currently on track for a resolution by the June 30, the date of expiry of the MoU between two governing bodies.

ACA had earlier rejected the new pay offer from the game’s governing body, saying the proposal will be a win for cricket administrators but a loss for the game. The ACA had also insisted that the CA’s proposal disrespects the value of domestic cricketers and the role they play in Australian cricket. CA, on the other hand, has maintained that their new pay offer has to be implemented for the long-term good of the game.

Under CA’s proposal, only male international players would have the chance to share in any surplus revenue, while other domestic male players and women at both domestic and international level would have to settle for fixed amounts which would not fluctuate according to the game’s income.