Unlike the AFL and NRL, Cricket Australia got their full season away before the COVID-19 crisis hit the country – so why are they in such a poor financial position?
Cricket Australia only has $97 million to its name due to what they have termed a low point in their four-year cycle.
In 2016, they had $270 million to their name.
CA chief executive Kevin Roberts explained why they have been forced to stand down most of their staff and why pay cuts are looming.
“It’s a factor of the timing. We’re really fortunate that it hit us at the end of the summer season, but really unfortunate that literally hits us at the lowest point of our four-year cash cycle,” Roberts told SEN’s Whateley.
“So in a pre-coronavirus world, we were projecting that our cash and investments were just under $100 million last month would erode to about $40 million in early September, but that’s already been hit to the tune of $20 million and we need to anticipate there is more to come.
“On the back of that, if the international season doesn’t get away, it’s an issue of hundreds of millions of dollars. So that’s what we’re dealing with, reactively based on what’s happened and proactively based on what could happen, but with a key effort to get the season away.”
What has happened to the $175 million that disappeared between 2016 and now? Roberts said three factors caused the losses.
“So back in 2016 we had just ridden the wave of the 2015 World Cup and significant financial return from the T20 champions league,” he said.
“We were anticipating in 2017 a $50 million deficit year, which happened, a $70 million payment to players and then in 2018 we moved $55 million of player retirement funds off our books, so those three factors alone are $175 million which basically answers that question.
“We were at $97 million last month and need to make sure we manage that prudently through this period.”
Cricket Australia is still hopeful of having an international summer of cricket against India at the end of the year.