Our colleague Martin Davies has taken some stick from the Guardian’s Cricket Correspondent Mike Selvey for asking how much the England women’s contracts are worth in financial terms:
With all due deference to Mr Selvey, we feel this is a legitimate question for one key reason – rumour has it that the Tier 3 contracts are not a full-time living wage. We should stress that this is only a rumour; but the fact that the ECB could if it wanted easily scotch such tittle-tattle but chooses not to, perhaps tells its own story? (After all, they seem happy enough for the men’s salaries to… um… “slip out“.)
Does this really matter? Yes and no! We certainly don’t have a problem with the concept of “part time” contracts, which require players to have “second jobs” as well to support themselves – this very web site is run and financed on just such a basis.
However we keep being told that England’s women cricketers are “full-time professionals”; and yet it is hard to be a “full-time professional” if your “full-time professional” job pays less than a full-time living wage.
So are the 19 really “full time professionals”? Until we know how much the T3 contracts are worth, the answer is that we genuinely don’t know… and that’s why it was a legitimate question to ask.