Zim Cricket Association launched

HARARE - Local cricketers have formed the Zimbabwe Cricketers Association (ZCA) in order to confront Zimbabwe Cricket (ZC) when it comes to remuneration related negotiations.

Previously, the Zimbabwean cricketers were represented by the short-lived Zimbabwe Professional Cricketers Association (ZPCA) which folded at the end of 2015 after former chief executive Eliah Zvimba’s contract was not renewed.

Zimba, who is a labour lawyer, fell out with some senior cricketers in the ZPCA executive members over a number of key appointments in the union’s secretariat.

In its short existence, ZPCA had played a major role in negotiating better remuneration and working conditions for the cricketers.

However, since its collapse, local cricketers have endured a torrid time as ZC has over the years failed to pay them on time.

At the moment, the players are threatening not to participate in the home Twenty-20 tri series against Pakistan and Australia set to start next month.

The players have given ZC a deadline of June 25 to pay them their outstanding salaries, match fees and bonuses.

“On Friday, June 1, 2018 the ZCA was formed, with full legal status and the power to sue and be sued in its own name,” said a statement from the cricketers’ legal representatives, Titan Law. “Amongst the objectives of the association, set out in terms of Paragraph 4 of its constitution are:

“...to represent, promote, advice and protect the interests of the members of the association, be it financially and otherwise, by inter alia, improving their terms, conditions and benefits of employment as cricketers and by negotiating and endeavouring to come agreements with ZC, and any successor to it in title and or Franchise Cricket Boards, and any successors to them in title...and or with any other lawfully constituted body involved in cricket in Zimbabwe and internationally.

“...to act as the collective voice and representative of its members on all issues affecting their interest.”

In the past, ZC has also gained a reputation of using divide and rule tactics when negotiating contracts with players.

It usually worked because there was collective bargaining protecting the players as they were negotiating their perks individually.

ZPCA tried to end these bullying tactics by ZC which sent shock waves across 28 Maiden Drive.

In the end, the players blamed ZC for orchestrating ZPCA’s collapse as they felt threatened.

“It is one of those moments when you begin to think that ZPCA under Zvimba was a better vehicle to bargain on behalf of the players but people never saw it coming when they allowed the union to die a natural death,” a player told the Daily News last year.