Players have worked best within guidelines: Ponting
Published: Thursday, August 22, 2002, 21:26 [IST]
Australia to send full-strength team to Sri Lanka
Sydney: Australia's announcement that it would send a full-strength team to the International Cricket Council (ICC) Champions Trophy in Sri Lanka has eased speculation there would be a mass boycott of the tournament even as the ICC remained firm in its stance of protecting tournament sponsors. "The players have worked as best they could within the guidelines and the Australian Cricket Board are going to use their best endeavours to help the players out," Australia's One-day captain Ricky Ponting said."The players were very disappointed that they weren't consulted at what was in the contracts because they were the ones that were going to be left in the lurch," he said. ACB chief executive James Sutherland said that while no Australian player had sponsorship deals conflicting with those at the Champions Trophy, the issue would need addressing before the World Cup. He said the ACB would work with players ahead of future tournaments and that in a worst-case scenario, players could be compensated if they were prevented from continuing their endorsements during tournaments. So far only the New Zealand team and several Zimbabwean players have agreed to the same terms as the Australians. May said cricket faced a "fundamental problem" if players refused to sign similar agreements ahead of the World Cup. "These tournaments ... we want to win them and we want to win them against the best possible players," he said. "I think cricket's got a responsibility to deliver the best possible players to the best possible tournaments and not necessarily maximise the best possible revenues out of the events. Cricket's prime responsibility is to get the best possible players out there."