Cricket Australia (CA) expressed its disappointment with the players and their decision to withdraw from Australia A's tour of South Africa amid the ongoing pay dispute, though the governing body remains hopeful of reaching a resolution.
Australia A's trip to South Africa was called off on Thursday in a show of strength by the players and the Australian Cricketers' Association (ACA) following the expiry of the Memorandum of Understanding on June 30, which has left more than 200 cricketers unemployed.
Ashes hopefuls Usman Khawaja and Glenn Maxwell were set to feature in South Africa, starting July 12, but a lack of progress between the two parties - with the ACA requesting a revenue sharing model which would give it a greater say in the game's future - has put the Bangladesh tour in August and the blockbuster showdown against England in doubt.
CA has now urged the ACA to be flexible during negotiations in order to agree to a new MOU.
"Cricket Australia (CA) is disappointed that players have today confirmed that they are unwilling to take part in the Australia A tour of South Africa. CA has never and would never attempt to compel any player to represent Australia at any level if they were unwilling to do so," CA said in a statement.
"Australia A gives players an opportunity to perform and gain experience at a high level against quality international opposition. CA has today advised Cricket South Africa of the players' decision.
"The Australia A tour was projected to cost CA in the vicinity of $250,000 [Australian dollars] to stage. All funds that can be recouped as a result of not touring will be allocated by CA to the National Communities Facilities Fund.
"Australia A squad members with multi-year state and BBL contracts will continue to have these honoured.
"Cricket Australia regrets that players have made this decision despite progress made in talks between CA and the ACA in meetings over the past week. These talks included regular communication between CEOs.
"While a new MOU has not yet been agreed, CA is of the view that these talks should have enabled the tour to proceed as planned.
"CA will continue to work towards a new MOU which is in the interests of both the players and the game and calls upon the ACA to show the flexibility clearly now needed to achieve that outcome."