Mar 02, Colombo: Deepening the crisis between the Sri Lanka Cricket administrators and the national players, the cricket board has given the country's top players an ultimatum to sign their annual contracts by Sunday morning or else they will not be playing in any international cricket including the Bangladesh tour series that is to start Sunday.
A meeting between the SLC administrators and 23 top national players Saturday ended unsuccessfully with both sides sticking to their guns.
Both sides have discussed their view points on the annual contract and the board has informed the players that it will not change its stance and there will be no more meetings with the players.
The SLC has advised the selectors not to pick any player who doesn't sign the annual contract by tomorrow. The players have been barred from using any SLC facility or services until they sign the contracts.
The new Captain Angelo Mathews and Vice-Captain Dinesh Chandimal, who are yet to lead the team since their appointment, are also slapped with the ban.
About 60 national players have refused to sign the SLC's annual contract for this year demanding the SLC to pay them 25% of the board's earnings from ICC events.
The SLC has been paying the players the 25% fee since 2003 but this year the cash-strapped SLC has dropped that from the annual contract saying that Sri Lanka's national players are well-paid.
The SLC has also dropped paying cricketers taking part in the IPL for as long as the player is with his IPL team and a free business class ticket given to cricketers' wives to travel on one tour per year with their spouses.
The SLC Secretary Nishantha Ranatunga has told local Daily Mirror that the cricketers are paid 79 percent of the SLC's annual income and even with the new contract they are paid 67 percent of the income, an amount much higher when compared to other countries which is around 25 percent.
The SLC is left with only 33 percent for all other expenses, including the board salaries, club fees, player facilities etc., Ranatunga has pointed out.
The national selectors will meet Sunday in Matara when Bangladesh and Sri Lanka are to meet for a warm-up match with a new Sri Lankan team, to discuss the current situation.