John Howard’s Rejection

1 07 2010

We can’t help but be disappointed on all sides following the furore surrounding ex-Australian PM John Howard’s aborted bid for the office of Vice-President of the I.C.C.. The sad fact of the matter is that the governance of this wonderful game has become a political point scoring exercise in the ICC’s grasp, rather than what it should be – a guiding hand to safe guard it’s future.

John Howard, a self confessed cricket tragic with unfortunately for him a history of controversy in cricketing circles, was never going to be an easy candidate for Cricket Australia to push. Cricket Australia should have realised this and perhaps gone with New Zealand’s desired choice who apparently would have been more popular, but equally, there seems little reason for the rest of the world (bar England) to react so vehemently. Its not over yet with Cricket Australia apparently considering trying to push him through anyway, yet we can’t see it working the second time if it failed so badly the first.

The ICC is such a toothless body anyway, with most national boards doing their own thing that, in all likelihood, a ‘cricket tragic’ is both the only person willing to do the job and the only person willing to try and work for the game of cricket rather than the board whom they represent. We are not without our reservations regarding John Howard as we don’t agree with him calling Muttiah Muralitharan a ‘chucker’ in 2004 amongst other things, yet to tell the truth and in the absence of other choices, we think cricket could do a lot worse.

The Compulsive Hooker’s main worry is that we get a VP, and subsequently a President, who does not have test cricket’s future as his priority. We worry that with someone in charge who prefers the shorter forms of the game (or the money it generates anyway), the game of test cricket, already under threat, may lose ground irreparably. At least with Howard you know that this form of the game will be his priority.

Either way and whatever the final resolution, this is simply yet another sorry chapter in the history of the ICC and would be laughable if it didn’t reflect on the game we all love.

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