ANTIGUA (Reuters) – Cricket West Indies (CWI) said it will halve salaries for staff and players for up to six months as it struggles to deal with the “debilitating economic challenges” caused by the coronavirus pandemic. International professional cricket remains suspended due to the virus, plunging cricket boards into financial crisis with no clear pathway in sight back to the normal state of play. CWI said it had delayed the 50% salary cut for staff, players, umpires and coaches, to take effect from July 1, as long as possible and hoped the temporary measure would not last more than three to six months. “CWI’s Board of Directors, with deep regret, have agreed to a plan that we expect will safeguard CWI’s future while delivering at least a minimum level of job protection for all of the people employed or contracted throughout the region’s cricket community,” the governing body said in a statement. West Indies are scheduled to tour England for a three-test series in July, which CWI approved in principle on Friday. CWI president Ricky Skerritt acknowledged the “huge sacrifice” by all stakeholders, whom he said were consulted about the plan. “...but I am confident that it won’t be long before CWI will be in a position to ensure that the sport we love can restart and be enjoyed once again by the thousands of cricket fans across the region and diaspora,” he added.