Indian Premier League has made Australian cricketer stars household names in India. Adam Gilchrist, recently on a promotional tour of the country, has confessed that more people recognize him in India than back home.
Australian cricket stars have been endorsing brands in India, promoting events and projects. The demand is on the rise. For the simple reason. If you cannot afford an Indian cricket icon, a foreigner with similar or closer credentials is there with lesser spent and no less ROIs on percentile terms.
This has led to a sudden rise of interest among Indian companies in the Australian cricketers as they are engaged in a wage dispute with Cricket Australia, which threatens to leave all Kangaroo players unemployed from July 1, IANS has reported from Sydney.
“The negotiations have obviously created interest overseas and there has been genuine interest from the Indian market in regards to players’ IP and taking that offshore,” Australian Cricketers Association (ACA) commercial manager Tim Cruickshank was quoted as saying by the Sydney Morning Herald.
With the players’ contracts set to expire on Friday, an emergency meeting of the ACA is scheduled in Sydney for Sunday, which current and former cricketers like David Warner, Steve Smith, Mitchell Starc and Shane Watson are expected to attend.
The issues before the meeting are the status of next month’s Australia A tour of South Africa, which is in major doubt since the five-minutes-to-midnight agreement expires on Friday, whether the players would accept tour payments for August Test series in Bangladesh, and their stance on those players who already have a contract rolling into the 2017-18 season.
Adding to the approaching maelstrom is that several player agents have held talks with rivals to CA sponsors, opening up the uncomfortable possibility for the governing body of players looking for competitors to their aligned brands such as the Commonwealth Bank and Toyota.
Australian high performance manager Pat Howard had earlier sent an email to all the players warning them to not enter in any agreements with rival companies of existing sponsors of the board.
“All players will be provided with a list of protected sponsors for 2017/18,” Howard wrote. “Any player entering into unapproved endorsements during any non-contract period puts at risk future endorsement arrangements with CA, State and W/BBL partners and puts you at risk of not being able to enter into a contract for the upcoming season with CA, the State or W/BBL Team,” he further wrote.