Australia captain Smith refuses to back down in pay dispute

A fair share for male and female players at all levels is what is driving captain Steve Smith to stand up to Cricket Australia.

Australia captain Steve Smith wants a swift and fair resolution to be achieved for cricketers in the country.   -  Getty Images

Australia captain Steve Smith insists players will not back down in their ongoing pay dispute, reiterating their desire for a "revenue sharing model".

The Memorandum of Understanding between Cricket Australia and the Australian Cricketers' Association (ACA) expired on June 30 with negotiations over a new deal at an impasse, with 200 players thus unemployed.

Next week's Australia A tour of South Africa has been cancelled and there have been suggestions the stand-off could affect the Ashes series against England in November.

Smith insists the players are unwilling to budge, explaining how the system helped him reboot his career after being cut from the Test side for the 2011 tour of Sri Lanka.

"I'll say what we as players have been saying for some time now: we are not giving up the revenue sharing model for all players," wrote the Australia skipper in a lengthy Instagram post.

"But, through the ACA we are willing to make important changes to modernise the existing model for the good of the game. We are and have always been willing to make those changes.

"Changes for how the model can be adapted for the even greater benefit of grass roots cricket, which is after all where we all started.

"We are determined to keep revenue sharing for all because we must take care of domestic players in Australia. 

"As leaders that's what David [Warner], Meg [Lanning], Alex [Blackwell] and I have been fighting for: a fair share for state players who are also partners in cricket.

"I know from my career that when I was dropped in 2011 if I didn't have a strong domestic competition to go back to, I certainly wouldn't be in the position that I'm in today.

"State players need to be taken care of financially so the domestic competition will always be strong which in turn keeps us strong at the international level.

"Also as women's cricket gets bigger and bigger in Australia women players must also be able to share in what they will be earning.

"They must have the same chances and incentives to grow the game as the men have had since revenue sharing started.

"And I know I speak for all of the men that we want women cricketers in the one deal with the men as well.

"It's time to get a deal done. It should be and can be an exciting time for the game."

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