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Eddings falls as Australia chairman after losing support

October 13, 2021 16:18 IST
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Australia coach Justin Langer with CA chairman Earl Eddings

IMAGE: Australia coach Justin Langer with CA chairman Earl Eddings. Photograph: Ryan Pierse/Getty Images

Cricket Australia chairman Earl Eddings resigned on Wednesday, a day before he was due to stand for re-election at the board's annual general meeting.

Eddings, whose three-year chairmanship was marked by near-constant division between member states, was under pressure after fellow board directors nominated by New South Wales and Queensland withdrew their support for him this week.

 

Western Australia also pulled its support after a meeting late on Tuesday, dealing a terminal blow to his re-election hopes, Australian media reported.

"It has been an honour and a privilege to be able to serve the sport I love as a Cricket Australia director," Eddings said.

"It is my sincere hope that following my resignation the state and territory associations can unite and work together in the best interests of cricket, allowing the focus to return to the sport ahead of the 2021-22 season."

Director Richard Freudenstein was installed as chairman in his place and will serve for a short period until a permanent replacement is elected, CA said in a statement on Wednesday.

Eddings's resignation comes only weeks after CA said he had the full support of the board despite state members New South Wales and Queensland publicly opposing his re-election.

A CA director for 13 years, Eddings replaced David Peever in 2018 as interim chairman after the former mining executive resigned following the release of a scathing cultural review into the Newlands ball-tampering scandal.

Eddings was quickly installed as permanent chairman, triggering an embarrassing complaint from his home state Victoria, which had opposed his appointment.

Victoria removed him as its nominated director the following year but Eddings managed to cling to the chairmanship as an independent director.

Eddings and the CA board came under major scrutiny after the governing body stood down 80% of its staff and tried to ram through swingeing cuts to state grants as "proactive measures" to deal with the fall-out from the COVID-19 pandemic.

Those moves, announced by former CEO Kevin Roberts but endorsed by the board, were condemned by eastern states and the players' union, which said they would prove "disastrous" for the game.

With pressure mounting, Roberts resigned after losing support of the board but Eddings pressed on for re-election despite reports of discontent dogging him to the eve of the AGM.

Australia's Head smashes record double ton in one-day cup

Middle-order batter Travis Head became the first Australian man to hit two double centuries in one-day cricket after scoring 230 runs for South Australia against Queensland in the Marsh Cup on Wednesday.

Head struck 28 fours and eight sixes off 127 balls on the way to the second-highest score in the history of the Australian one-day cup, behind D'Arcy Short's 257, also against Queensland, in 2018.

Left-hander Head, who played the last of his 42 ODIs for Australia in 2018, scored 202 against Western Australia six years ago.

Head was dropped from Australia's test team last year but will be hoping to win his spot back for the Ashes series against England, which is due to begin in Brisbane on December 8.

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Source: REUTERS
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