The latest contract dispute between the West Indies Cricket Board and players could be resolved by the weekend, according to players' representative Dinanath Ramnarine.
"We have been talking and things are progressing slowly. In fact, I'm optimistic that we can make an announcement of a settlement within the next 24 to 48 hours," Ramnarine said.
A deal between would clear the way for West Indies to field a full-strength team at next month's proposed tri-series with India and Australia. Doubts over West Indies' entry caused India to invite Sri Lanka and New Zealand to be on standby.
The West Indies Players Association threatened action last month when star allrounder Dwayne Bravo did not receive a retainer contract because of his personal endorsement with a telecommunications competitor of WICB's main sponsor.
WIPA was annoyed the board went against its promise to consult about the contracts, which were offered to captain Brian Lara, vice-captain Ramnaresh Sarwan, former captain Shivnarine Chanderpaul, Chris Gayle, Corey Collymore, Fidel Edwards and Denesh Ramdin.
Also upsetting to WIPA was Lara being investigated by WICB for his critical comments about the selectors and pitch after the Test series loss to India. Lara publicly apologised on Wednesday, after prompting from the board.
Ramnarine said the cash-strapped board needed to approach the players first before any agreement. He said he wasn't looking for another fight but a fair deal for the players.
"The West Indies Cricket Board cannot take another blow at this time, so we are prepared to hold hands and walk with them," Ramnarine said on Thursday.