Virus financial fallout to cut deep in Queensland
Queensland has become the latest state to feel the wrath of Australian cricket's cash crisis with emotional bosses telling staff redundancies are inevitable.
It had been widely rumoured NSW, Queensland and West Australia had submitted a raft of questions to Cricket Australia seeking more information before agreeing to the 25 per cent pay cuts the states have been asked to take in the wake of CA's financial capitulation during COVID-19.
But, as explained to Queensland Cricket staff in a Thursday morning staff meeting, the cuts are now inevitable and Queensland will follow South Australia, Victoria and Tasmania in culling staff.
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Because the states are funded by CA in a "one team" model they are obliged to follow the instructions of head office but there remains widespread bewilderment and frustration at how cricket could end up in such a financial pickle when the virus hit so close to the end of the Australian season.
There is a feeling among some staff that Cricket Australia is catering for a worst-case scenario with the staff cuts but if giant drawcards India tour next summer that scenario won't arrive yet it will be too late to save the jobs of people culled in the crisis.
Cuts are expected throughout the entire QC business including high performance and senior staff will perform their duties with heavy hearts, especially since QC had made strong financial progress in recent seasons after many difficult years.
Bulls coach Wade Seccombe told News Corp last week that Shield cricket would go back in time "10 to 15 years" with less support staff and more reliance on players to be self-sufficient.
Cutback measures are likely in all interstate competitions including the Sheffield Shield which is likely to be pruned from 10 to eight games and no final.
Test batsman Joe Burns said he supported a 10-match season but appreciates the pressures created by the pandemic.
"I love the fact we have a strong first class system - the 10 games where we play everyone twice," Burns said.
"You don't want to see that change but it is pretty unique circumstances at the moment so there are a lot of things to work through."
Burns said he did not fear a change to eight games next season would be permanent.
"You look at next summer as being really unique circumstances. Any changes would be with a view of trying to nullify the risk around the financials of the game.
"Once the financials are in a really strong position I don't think there will be any need to make adjustments to save on costs."
Originally published as Virus financial fallout to cut deep in Queensland