Cricketers agree contracts off to T-20 World Cup

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ZIMBABWE’S cricketers finally signed their 2014 ICC World Cup Twenty20 tournament contracts ahead of their departure to Bangladesh on Wednesday night.
Cricket officials and the Zimbabwe Professional Cricketers Association met on Monday and reached an agreement to end a dispute where the players were demanding a portion of the ICC revenue.
This was above their expected earnings of as much as $11,500 per player and an additional $2 700 winning bonus per match in the second round.
“Players have been paid a lump sum towards the World Cup contract,” ZPCA secretary-general, Eliah Zvimba said.
“The amount covers the appearance and match fees. The players have signed contracts and all is well now.
“We will continue negotiating for a percentage from the ICC revenues to secure salaries for players after the World Cup.”
ZC managing director Wilfred Mukondiwa and national team captain Brendan Taylor confirmed that the players’ union and the cricket leadership had struck an agreement.
Taylor remains the team’s best batsman and yesterday he sounded focused, on the huge assignment of leading the team at the World Cup, after the resolution of their impasse with ZC.
Zimbabwe will face the Netherlands, Afghanistan and Ireland in Group C of the qualifier stages.
Meanwhile, the national cricket team will play four warm-up matches before kick starting their campaign in the qualifiers for the ICC World Twenty20 competition in Bangladesh following the confirmation of two extra warm matches against the Bangladesh Board XI side.
Zimbabwe is expected to play two matches against Hong Kong and Afghanistan before their first match against Ireland on March 17.
The warm-up match against Hong Kong had been slated for next Wednesday in Chittagong, ahead of the second match Afghanistan two days later.
However, the team is now expected to play two extra warm up matches in addition to the mandatory two organised by the ICC after Zimbabwe Cricket reached an agreement with their Bangladesh counterparts.
The agreement means Zimbabwe, who haven’t played international cricket since September will become one of the first participating teams to arrive in Bangladesh.
Assistant coach Steven Mangongo said the extra matches would be a huge boost to the team’s preparations and they would allow them to acclimatise quickly to the Bangladesh conditions.Advertisement

“We are happy with the travel arrangements made by ZC because we are travelling at least five days before the due date of arrival.
According to the due date of arrival set by the ICC we were supposed to leave by the 8th of March but we are leaving on the 5th which gives us a little bit of extra time.
“ZC have also organised another two extra warm-up matches against Bangladesh Board XI team so basically we will have four warm-up games including the matches against Hong Kong and Afghanistan which is very important for us to get the guys ready,” he said.
Zimbabwe Squad: Brendan Taylor (captain), Hamilton Masakadza, Prosper Utseya, Elton Chigumbura, Sean Williams, Malcolm Waller, Vusi Sibanda, Sikander Raza, Brian Vitori, Tendai Chatara, Natsai M’shangwe, Shingirai Masakadza, Timycen Maruma, Tafadzwa Kamungozi, Tinashe Panyangara