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September 4, 2009

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No end in sight to West Indies contract dispute

LEADING West Indies cricketers such as Chris Gayle and Shivnarine Chanderpaul must play in a Guyana tournament next month to qualify for future national selection, a top official said on Wednesday.
Chetram Singh, president of the Guyana Cricket Board, said the star players must suit up for the limited-overs tournament in Guyana beginning on October 27 or be deemed ineligible for upcoming series, including tours of Australia in November-December and next February.
His comments came a day after mediation to resolve the contract dispute between the West Indies Cricket Board and senior players collapsed.
Singh, a member of the WICB, blamed the players for the failure. The mediator, former Commonwealth general secretary Shridath Ramphal, said a deal was close until one of the sides introduced a new document.
The leading players boycotted the home tests against Bangladesh in July and watched their replacements being swept aside in the tests and one-dayers. Gayle and Co ended their strike before the one-day series and made themselves available, but the WICB said they were ineligible because they would not sign contracts for the series, and therefore also ineligible for the Champions Trophy in South Africa this month.


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