Richie Sambora

Richie Sambora

Bon Jovi appear to have sacked Richie Sambora.

The guitarist hasn't played with the 'Bad Medicine' rockers since failing to appear for a show in Canada in April, and has now reportedly been dropped from their payroll.

According to the axeman was receiving $2 million a month as well as 20 per cent of the profits after each show in their Because We Can tour. This contrasts with his replacement, Phil X, who is only making $10,000 a month on the tour.

A source close to the star said: "Richie wants to go back on stage - that's his first love. He's really upset over the news."

No reason has been given for the guitarist's absence beyond "personal issues" but singer Jon Bon Jovi has said "he's been through it before," leading many to think he could be battling issues with alcohol, for which he went to rehab in 2011.

Richie, 54, was also hurt when Jon appeared to claim he wasn't a vital part of the band.

The singer said: "Life goes on, so if someone chooses not to be here... unlike if this were, God forbid, The Edge, and he for some reason couldn't make a U2 show, [then] it would be very difficult to just step in."

Richie then reportedly sent Jon a scathing email, reading: "Hire The Edge."

A band insider added: "Richie was so p****d off and insulted with The Edge comment that he couldn't bite his tongue any longer. He sent Jon an email, but Jon did not respond."

Richie had previously said he hoped to rejoin the group next month, saying: "Let's see what happens at the end of summer. September's looking good. So, maybe September."

Bon Jovi's Because We Can tour is set to resume in Mexico on September 10.

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