World Cup prize money disparity is an obstacle to Equal Pay for Men and Women
The International Cricket Council (ICC) has announced that the 2018 Cricket World Cup will set an equal number of dollars for men and women for the first time. As the media release stated, this will result in more than USD$1 billion in prize money being available for the tournament.
But will this actually result in more than USD$1 billion? Even if it does, this won’t address the underlying issue that women are not being paid equally.
Until the World Cup, the World Women’s Cricket Council had not even released their own figure, which showed that at the 2010 ICC Women’s World Cup in Bangladesh, the men’s prize fund was USD$6,300,000 compared to women’s USD$3,300,000. It appeared that both the men’s and women’s groups were paying the same or very similar amounts.
In 2011, the ICC announced that both the men’s and women’s World Cup prize fund was set to be USD$10 billion. However, this was only paid for by a relatively small group of the world’s richest cricketers, who made more than USD$1 billion in 2013. The disparity has increased over time.
The issue of equality of prize money has increased as well at the ICC. It has been claimed that the ICC is paying approximately US$3 billion in prize money to the top five franchises and the prize fund could easily be more than USD$5 billion for the eight teams competing at the World Cup.
Women’s cricket is not considered a “men’s sport”. The World Cricket League (WCL) is the only official women’s sport in the world. Women’s cricket is not recognised by the ICC, which is why the ICC is paying the World Cup prize money to the men’s World Cup teams in Australia and New Zealand.
In 2014, the ICC announced that it had set up a separate women’s tournament, and this would run in the Indian Premier League (IPL). The IPL, a multi-day event which features all the most successful franchises of the Big Bash League (BBL), is considered the biggest