A giant step forward for Taiwanese baseball today. As CPBL Players Union (TPBPA) have decided to boycott all future CTBA events, which includes international tournaments and various domestic exhibition games. (Here’s some back story on CTBA and why this is a good thing)
Players just a money making tool
The whole incident started in February 2017 during the WBC training camp. CTBA arranged a series of non-official exhibition games against the Cuban national team without players consent. Despite selling the broadcasting rights and tickets to public, the players union were told all revenues belongs to CTBA. Essentially CTBA is asking players to play for free to further CTBA’s financial gain.
According to CPBL Players Union spokesperson, during the WBC training camp, players were often forced to attend non-official private functions by CTBA in order to gain more corporate sponsorship.
Promised to split profit. But where’s the money?
After mediation between the players union and CTBA. Players were promised a cut of the profit from the exhibition games. However players never receive the payment from CTBA after the exhibition games. (Similar case happened back in 2013 WBC too with payment for coaches)
CTBA cooking their financial book once again.
Based on the
income statement (a piece of A4 paper) released by CTBA. During the exhibition series between Taiwan and Cuba. CTBA received over $173,000 USD in revenues and after minus the expenses, CTBA made a profit of $58,000.
The $58,000 profit that supposed to be used as the exhibition games payment to players somehow magically disappeared. CTBA claimed they’ll have to use that for players WBC tournament payment and for purchasing players suits.
But here’s the problem. Those 2 expense categories we mentioned above are already covered by the 1.6 million USD funding which CTBA received from the government. So, why CTBA is claiming those 2 expenses again? And why the supposed watchdog Sports Administration Department let it happen? and more importantly WHERE IS THE MONEY?
We talked more about the close relationship between the Sports Administration and CTBA here. But long story short, CTBA basically run the Sports Administration.
Enough is enough. Statement from CPBL Players Union
After several mediation attempts with CTBA with no result. It’s very clear the trust between CTBA and the CPBL Players Union has been broken.
After the union board meeting in July. The players union have decided to boycott all future CTBA events. At the same time have re-listed 6 major demands for all future international tournaments.
- Insurance policy for players.
- Union must be involve during the tournament preparation, training, selection stage.
- Union representatives must be present throughout the duration of the tournament to protect and ensure players rights.
- Transparency in tournament’s financial statement.
- The length of the pre-tournament training phase must be approved by the Union. Union’s recommendation no longer than 4 weeks.
- Without union consent, the event organiser can not forced players to attend non-official private functions.
Sports Administration act as CTBA attack dog.
As we previous mentioned, the relationship between CTBA and Sports Administration are very close. Instead of serving as the watchdog to monitor CTBA, Sports Administration often plays the role of attack dog for CTBA.
Shortly after the announcement of the union boycott, the Sports Administration started applying political pressure by calling individual members of the players unions, and twisting their words regarding to the union boycott.
Here’s what the CPBL Players Union have to say about this
- Union’s stance on the boycott remains the same. Which applied to all the union members.
- Sports Administration should followed the correct channel of communication. Rather than contacting individual players privately and twisting their words.
- Sports Administration spreading false information, such action it’s a branch of trust between the Sports Administration and the Players Union. A formal complaint have been filed and the union demands a retraction and an apology from Sports Administration.
Sports Administration covering for CTBA
After the 2017 WBC tournament. A series of post WBC debriefing were scheduled by CTBA, hoping to improve and make changes for the future. But the public, legislators and players have no access to the meeting minutes. Players and coaches were not invited, it a closed door internal meetings amongst the CTBA personnel.
Whenever legislators requested for the meeting minutes, Sports Administration always making excuses for CTBA and trying to delay the process.
Union invited, but only to discuss logistic, nothing else.
“It’s always the same S.O.P with CTBA since the 2000s. Every time after an unsuccessful international tournament CTBA told the public they will call for a meeting for change, but nothing ever materialised over it”
“The 2017 post-WBC debriefing, players union were only invited to participate in the logistic part of the debriefing. Union was unable to give their opinions on the topics of formation of the team, training phase and selections process.”
“It’s been almost 6 months since the WBC tournament, we have no idea what has been discussed in the debriefing. What has been changed? What’s the point to have this debriefing if players aren’t invited and express their opinions?”
Said the union spokesperson when asked to comment on the post-WBC debriefing by CTBA.