In a startling update, the Indian women’s cricket team that reached the final of the ICC T20 World Cup in Australia in 2020 are yet to receive their prize money from the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), according to a report in The Telegraph

The final was played on March 8, 2020 where Australia defeated India by 85 runs in Melbourne. India were led by Harmanpreet Kaur and according to the report, the pending prize money amounted to $ 5,00,000.

The Federation of International Cricketers’ Association (FICA)’s CEO Tom Moffat said, “Prize money is payable to players for their on-field performance in pinnacle events and the late non-payment of money owing to players is unacceptable,” Moffat told Telegraph Sport. “We encourage players in India to consider getting organised as part of a players’ association so they, and the game in India, can benefit from collective player representation in the same way that their fellow professionals around the world do.”

The revelation comes at a time when the BCCI has been under the scanner and drawn a lot of flak for the pay gap between the India men’s and women’s contracts. Men’s contracts are divided into four slabs – Rs 7 crore, Rs 5 crore, Rs 3 crore and Rs 1 crore while the women’s contracts are divided into three slabs – Rs 50 lakhs, Rs 30 lakhs and Rs 10 lakhs, making for a massive gap between the top slab of women’s and the lowest slab of men’s contract.

The BCCI had recently announced annual player contracts for the women’s team for the period ranging from October 2020 to September 2021. Harmanpreet Kaur, Smriti Mandhana and Poonam Yadav were included in the highest slab called Grade A.

ODI captain and veteran Mithali Raj and experienced pacer Jhulan Goswami who are retired from T20Is have been included in Grade B alongside the 17-year old Shafali Verma who has been promoted from Grade C. Punam Raut and Rajeshwari Gayakwad are others who have been promoted similarly.

As per the latest contracts rolled out, Veda Krishnamurthy is the only player to miss out from the T20 World Cup squad.

Featured image : William West