Will tour Bangladesh only if pay dispute is resolved, says Steve Smith
What’s the story?
Australian captain Steve Smith once again shifted the ball to Cricket Australia's court when he drove home the point that the Australian team would only board the plane to Bangladesh if the Memorandum of Understanding around the pay dispute comes through.
"I'd like to (tour Bangladesh), but as we've said for a long time we need to get the deal done first. I don't think it would be fair for us to go away after the [Australia] A guys were very strong on not going away on their tour [of South Africa], for us to then go away, I don't think that's fair," Smith made his intentions clear to Fox Sports.
Also read: All you need to know about ACA-CA pay war
Smith also mentioned that he had personally met Pat Howard, the CA's Executive GM of Team Performance, and informed him about how things would pan out if the pay dispute is not resolved.
Amidst all the confusion, the Australian captain also conceded that he finds himself in a very tricky position as he has to always juggle between voicing the opinion of the players and maintaining a healthy relationship with Cricket Australia.
He, however, also said that things have started to move in the right direction and that he is quite optimistic about the future.
In case you didn’t know...
As many as 230 Australian players (both men and women) are without jobs as their contracts with Cricket Australia were terminated when the players refused to agree to a new and revised pay structure.
This is perhaps the biggest pay dispute to have hit Australian cricket and even after two months, the stalemate has continued.
The first casualty of this dispute was the Australia A team which pulled out of the A-series in South Africa.
The final decision once again falls back on the Cricket Australia's board of independent directors.
Although several reports suggested that a middle ground has been reached, local media have refuted any such arrangement. However, there has been substantial progress made and there are whispers that some sort of amicable solution is being chalked out.
Michael Clarke has already called out for a resolution as he believes that the Australian players should play as many matches before the Ashes.
However, since the players are not willing to blink at the moment, the onus once again and for the final time lies with Cricket Australia as their decision could have massive repercussions all over the cricketing world.