The Federation of International Cricketers’ Association (FICA) has shown solidarity with the national and first-class domestic cricketers of Bangladesh with FICA chairman Tony Irish saying via a press release that the players’ strike was a ‘clear indication of the need for change in the way players are treated in what we regard as an important cricket country.’
Some of the country’s best cricketers, including the likes of Shakib Al Hasan, Mushfiqur Rahim, Tamim Iqbal and Mahmudullah Riyad, spoke during a press conference yesterday and put forward an 11-point demand. They also announced that they have boycotted all cricketing activities and will not return to the field until their demands are met.
“FICA commends the players in Bangladesh for their unity and for taking a stand together in order to secure fair conditions applicable to them as professional cricketers. This has happened despite the challenging environment for players to collectivize in Bangladesh and it is a clear indication of the need for change in the way players are treated in what we regard as an important cricket country,” the Executive of FICA said in a press release.
The players yesterday said that they felt a lack of respect from the BCB. FICA emphasized that it is concerning that Cricketers' Welfare Association of Bangladesh (CWAB) members also hold positions within the board.
“It is also clear to us that the players in Bangladesh don’t feel heard or respected in relation to important issues that affect them in their careers and that affect their livelihoods. It is the role of a players’ association to be the voice, and collective representative, of the players, and it is a matter of concern to us that the Cricketers' Welfare Association of Bangladesh (CWAB) does not appear to be fulfilling this role at a very critical time for the players. It is of further concern that it appears that office bearers of CWAB hold positions with the Bangladesh Cricket Board.”
“Given the collective nature of the issues we believe that it’s important for FICA to offer its support and assistance to the players during this time,” the FICA press release said.
The statement also reiterated that it wanted to review CWAB’s membership of FICA since they wanted to ensure that ‘member players' associations are both genuinely representative of current players and clearly independent from relevant governing bodies.’