Cricket Australia chief James Sutherland announced he will step down in the wake of the ball-tampering scandal.
Sutherland, who has been chief executive for 17 of his 20-year association with the board, has given 12 months’ notice and will continue in his role until a suitable replacement is found.
“After nearly 20 years at Cricket Australia, the time is right. I feel very comfortable that this is the right time for me and a good time for the game,” he said.
Sutherland’s position came under the scanner in March when former captain Steve Smith, David Warner and batsman Cameron Bancroft admitted to attempting to alter the condition of the ball in the third Test in South Africa.
The three were banned from state and international cricket following one of the biggest scandals in the sport with coach Darren Lehmann also resigning.
I love the sumptuous understatement of James Sutherland's phrase describing Australian cricket: "an incident-rich environment"...— Annabel Crabb (@annabelcrabb) June 6, 2018
“It certainly was a big issue at the time. But when you work in an industry and an environment as we do, as chief executive of a major sport, these things come from time to time,” he said.
“It hasn’t had a bearing on my decision.”
The other major recent controversy that had an impact on Sutherland’s image was the protracted pay dispute with players that almost brought Australian cricket to a halt.
Sutherland said he was continuing for a year to allow the board to make a smooth transition.
“I think that having been in the role for 17 years, there are things that I’ve come to know along the way, that it’s only appropriate for me to work closely with my successor.
“But at the same time, I’ll be looking to get out of their way as quickly as possible as well.”
NSW Cricket chairman John Warn stepped down from his position this week and is being seen as a potential replacement, according to AFP.
Cricket Australia chairman David Peever lauded Sutherland for his achievements. “On behalf of the board and management of Cricket Australia we thank James for his wonderful service to the game,” he said.
“James has been instrumental in driving crucial change around the game to make it even stronger for future generations.”
The Aboriginal XI have made the perfect start to their 150-year anniversary commemorations with back-to-back wins over the Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC) in their double header today at Arundel Castle.
In match one the MCC won the toss and sent the Aboriginal XI in to bat. After losing Damon Egan early, Brynley Richards (33) and Brendan Smith (34) combined for a 62-run partnership off just 51 balls to place their side in a strong position.
The dismissal of both Richards and Smith saw Ben Patterson make his way to the crease and he wasted no time in launching several balls in all directions of Arundel Castle on his way to an unbeaten 49 off just 23 deliveries.
In the end the Aboriginal XI finished their 20 overs 8-150. Mark Watt and James Letchford took three wickets each for the MCC.
In reply a share of wickets across the board saw the MCC lose batsman at regular intervals to eventually be all out for 129 in 19.3 overs. Scott Boland finished with figures of 3-29 while Sam Doggett, Dan Christian and Jonte Pattison claimed two wickets each.
In the second match a much improved MCC finished their 20 overs 3-147 thanks largely to a 107 partnership between Simon Lambert (78*) and Dylan Budge (43*).
In reply 24 off 18 from Damon Egan got the Aboriginal XI off to a flyer before some tight bowling from John Stephenson and James Letchford slowed the scoring rate dramatically in the middle overs.
Enter skipper Dan Christian, fresh from playing for the Delhi Daredevils in the IPL, who with strong support from Jonte Pattison (27) belted 78 not out off just 53 balls including winning the game with ten runs off the first two balls of the 20th over.
Tomorrow both the men’s and women’s squads will visit London’s Meath Garden’s the place of rest of Bripumyarrimin (King Cole) the player who passed away on tour in 1868.
Attention will then turn to Thursday when both teams play Surrey at The Oval.
Full results of Aboriginal XI Men v MCC Match one available HERE
Full results of Aboriginal XI Men v MCC Match two available HERE
The banned Australian batsman was named as one the marquee players for the inaugural Global T20 Canada league last week. According to a report by cricket.com.au, Smith will be donating his fees to grassroots cricket in both Australia and Canada.
Smith, along with his deputy David Warner, was handed a 12-month ban from international and domestic cricket by Cricket Australia for his role in the ball-tampering episode on the South African tour. Protagonist Cameron Bancroft had been handed a nine-month suspension for the same.
The Global T20 League will take place in Toronto and is slated to get underway on June 28. The month-long tournament which will feature six teams in total including a side comprising entirely of Caribbean players.
Each team will be required to field four Canadian players including an U23 cricketer. The player-draft for the teams is expected to take place soon with Warner rumored to be made available for the tournament as well.
According to the report, as part of a deal with the organizers of the league, Smith will also be helping to promote the sport in the country by conducting several training camps for cricket communities.
Earlier, Cameron Bancroft and Warner’s participation has been confirmed for the NT Strike League in Darwin, a month-long T20 and ODI event featuring four franchises. That tournament is set to take place in July and will be the first involvement in any form of cricket for the pair since their suspension unless Warner is picked up in the draft for the Global T20 Canada league.