Cricket Australia chairman David Peever quit Thursday after coming under intense pressure over a ball-tampering scandal which has triggered an exodus of senior figures and long bans for three players.
The former Rio Tinto mining executive was only voted in for a new three-year term last week, days before a scathing independent review sparked by the cheating row slammed the governing body.
Calls have been mounting for Peever to go after it emerged that the CA-commissioned report was not provided to the country’s state associations before he was re-elected.
He was also widely criticised after an interview with broadcaster ABC this week in which he referred to the ball-tampering affair, which rattled the sport and caused an outcry among the Australian public, as a “hiccup”.
“Cricket Australia has today confirmed that Mr. David Peever has announced his resignation as chairman of the board of Cricket Australia, effective immediately,” the governing body said in a statement.
His deputy Earl Eddings, a former Cricket Australia director, was appointed as interim chairman.
The review by the Sydney-based Ethics Centre blasted CA’s conduct leading up to the tampering incident in March, when players were caught using sandpaper to alter the ball at a Test match in Cape Town.
It found that an “arrogant” and “controlling” culture within the governing body contributed to players, who existed in a “gilded bubble”, cheating in the pursuit of victory.
The document also included complaints that there was a bullying culture in elite men’s cricket.
It made 42 recommendations, including establishing an anti-harassment code to stop sledging and training to improve team leaders’ “moral courage”.
Peever had until now kept his job despite the exit of CA chief executive James Sutherland, coach Darren Lehmann and team performance boss Pat Howard.
Peever, 61, was defiant in the immediate aftermath of the review, declaring he was “not embarrassed at all”, while acknowledging that the board shared responsibility for the events in South Africa.
He insisted he had no plans to resign, but The Australian newspaper reported that he was told by key stakeholders on Thursday that his position had become untenable.
“We look forward to continuing the important process of recovering and rebuilding for Cricket Australia and Australian cricket,” Eddings said.
“The board is keenly aware that we have a way to go to earn back the trust of the cricket community. We and the executive team are determined to make cricket stronger,” he added.
Former CA chief executive Malcolm Speed has called for Mark Taylor, a respected former captain and current board member, to take over as permanent chairman.
“David is the first to have come out of the corporate world rather than out of the cricket world and I think in this crisis that’s what’s shown here,” Speed said this week.
“Now, it’s not a hiccup, it’s much more than that, and my response to that was when I saw that interview and I thought Australian cricket can do better in choosing its chairman.
“The game deserves better governance, the game deserves better leadership.”
Peever, who took over the chairmanship from former Test opener Wally Edwards in 2015, has been a polarising figure.
He helped negotiate a new Aus$1.2 billion (US$855 million) broadcast deal for the organisation, but was widely criticised for his handling of a bitter 2017 pay dispute.
The Sri Lankan cricket board on Thursday granted its players the permission to play in the upcoming UAE T20x, a newly launched T20 franchise league.
With this decision, Sri Lanka Cricket joins other full member nations including England, West-Indies, South Africa, New Zealand, Zimbabwe, Afghanistan and Ireland along with 16 associate members; all of which have allowed its players to participate in the UAE T20x.
Sri Lanka Cricket’s decision is another stamp of approval for the inaugural league which promises to bring together a host of international stars to strut their wares in front of cricket fans in the UAE.
Fans in the UAE will now get a chance to watch Sri Lankan stars such as Lasith Malinga, TM Dilshan, Ajantha Mendis, Angelo Mathews, Upul Tharanga, Thisara Perera, Rangana Herath, Dushmantha Chameera, Jeffrey Vandersay, Jeevan Mendis, Dilshan Munaweera, Angelo Perera, Lakshan Sandakan who have all signed up to be a part of the exciting league.
Sri Lankan cricketing veteran and the league’s icon player Kumar Sangakkara welcomed the decision and said: “I am delighted that the Sri Lankan cricket board has granted its players the permission and encouragement to participate in what promises to be an incredible tournament.”
“This displays that Sri Lanka cricket understands the benefits that the UAE T20x can bring to the sport in our country, with youngsters learning and playing with the best names in international cricket. It is also a great chance for the world to watch some exciting Sri Lankan cricketers and legendary coaches”
Salman Sarwar Butt, CEO of UAE T20x said: “Sri Lanka Cricket’s support towards the UAE T20x means that yet another full member nation has recognised the importance of the league. It is indeed great to see such support from the global cricket community.”
“The UAE T20x constantly strives to enhance diversity and seeks to attract fans and partners from all over the world. Considering this, it is very promising to know that we now have 24 cricket boards understanding the value of our league, which aims to nurture domestic talent and grow the game globally”.
UAE T20x will take place from 19 December to 11 January in Dubai and Sharjah with five new franchise teams vying for the inaugural title in a 22-match format to be played over 24 days.
The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has defended its appointment of Wasim Akram to the newly formed cricket committee despite the former Pakistan skipper’s indictment for non-cooperation in the Justice Qayyum commission report on match-fixing.
In 1998, the Justice Qayyum inquiry had been commissioned to probe several allegations of match-fixing in Pakistan cricket with the final report coming out in 2000.
Akram had been fined for not cooperating with the probe but PCB chairman Ehsan Mani had controversially termed the report as ‘inconclusive’ last week when asked to comment on the former Pakistan pacer’s inclusion in the cricket committee.
“The Qayyum commission report did not bar Wasim Akram from working for the betterment of cricket and for the PCB,” a statement from the PCB read.
PCB refutes speculation over Justice Qayyum report.— PCB Official (@TheRealPCB) October 30, 2018
Details here: https://t.co/8MBmGQcpN8
“The former captain has, since his retirement, established a reputation as a cricket commentator, coach and mentor all around the world and is widely acknowledged as a legend of the game.
“The aim of PCB is to benefit from the vast experience of former cricketers in managing the game and Wasim, being an ICC Hall of Famer, has the requisite expertise to help Pakistan Cricket in its path to improvement.”
Akram has been inducted into the newly constituted cricket committee which will advise PCB chief Ehsan Mani on all cricketing matters. The committee also comprises of former Pakistan skipper Misbah-ul-Haq and has Mohsin Khan as its chairman.