In what could snowball into an embarrassment for the Indian Premier League, some Australian cricketers who participated in the cash-rich twenty20 series claim they have not received the wages for their short stints despite repeated reminders to their respective franchise owners.
Australian Cricketers Association (ACA) chief Paul Marsh has claimed that the players, who returned home after playing in the IPL for the first two weeks due to national commitment in West Indies, were frustrated with the impasse.
'The Sun Herald' quoted an un-named Australian player as saying that his franchise was not clearing his money despite claiming on three occasions that his wage was on its way.
"First I was told it would be in two weeks," the player said. "That passed by and I was told it would be in the following week. Then I was told it would be in in the next few days. I just said, 'I'll believe it when I see it'," he revealed.
Another player was reportedly trying to get his money in installments as he needed it urgently to make mortgage payments.
The newspaper's report said one of the players got his payment only a few days ago but that too after a lot of effort.
The top Aussie cricketers who returned after the first couple of weeks in IPL included skipper Ricky Ponting, pace spearhead Brett Lee, Michael Hussey, Simon Katich and all-rounder Andrew Symonds among others.
Marsh said the ACA was keeping a close eye on the matter and will assist the players in getting their due from the IPL franchisees.
"It's something we're aware of. There's still a few that haven't been paid," Marsh said. "It's certainly something we've got our eye on but it's not something that we're panicking about. We just want to get a result as soon as we can," he added.
Marsh said though the delay has been frustrating, the Aussies were not inclined to make it a big issue but the ACA would speak to the BCCI if the impasse continued for long.
"I don't want to blow this up into something that it's not, but I also do want to sort it out as quickly as possible," he said.
"It's something we'll go a bit harder on in the not too distant future if it doesn't get sorted out. "The bad PR that would eventuate if the players weren't paid would be so bad that none of the players would go back and the whole thing would fall over," he added.
The ACA chief said the cash-rich league, which saw absurd amount of money being bid on cricketers during the players' auction, could have been more professional in its dealings.
"You're talking about some billion-dollar corporations so you just can't see how they wouldn't pay their players. They know they have to pay their players and that's why we're not panicking.
"The clubs' focus has been about putting their teams on the field. It's organised chaos over there. But at the same time, we'd like to think they would have been more professional than this," he said.