Wednesday, August 28, 2002, Chandigarh, India


M A I N   N E W S

Indian players relent on contract issue

Leeds, August 27
In the stand-off between the top Indian players and the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), the cricketers today offered to “back off” from their sponsors during the Champions Trophy so that they are available for selection to the Indian team.

“The players have decided in the interest of the game to back off for the period of 18 days during the ICC Champions Trophy in Sri Lanka next month and will speak to their sponsors on television ads and hence would be available for selection,” players’ spokesman Ravi Shastri said without elaborating.

The players’ offer comes in the wake of a deadlock following the board’s decision to send a second-string team to Colombo after top players refused to sign the controversial ICC agreement that will bar players from endorsing companies which clash with those of the official sponsors of the tournament.

Maintaining that the cricketers have taken the decision in the “interest of the game”, Shastri said “For the future though, the players will strongly recommend to the board to give them a share of their profit which would be distributed among the international and national cricketers playing the game in India.”

Shastri said the players have also strongly recommended a representative body for them which would ensure better relationship between the board and the players.

The Indian players, currently in England, have consistently refused to sign the contract which requires them to forego their personal endorsements one month before and after the tournament in favour of the official sponsors in the event of a clash of interest.

Players in Australia, England, Sri Lanka and South Africa have already agreed to sign the contract on the condition that they will be consulted by the ICC before finalising any future commercial deals. PTI


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