Melbourne:Former Australian Prime Minister John Howard has been jointly nominated by Australia and New Zealand to serve as International Cricket Council president from 2012.
Cricket Australia and New Zealand Cricket announced Howard's nomination for the ICC vice-presidency Tuesday, ending months of division in which the organizations supported rival candidates.
Australia strongly supported Howard, an enthusiastic cricket follower with no previous experience in the sport's administration, while New Zealand backed its former chairman and ICC representative Sir John Anderson.
The Australasian nominee will become ICC vice-president before succeeding India's Sharad Pawar as president in 2012 under the ICC's rotation system. Pawar is due to take over from the incumbent, England's David Morgan, for two years from later this year.
Howard's nomination will now go to the ICC's executive board meeting for approval in April before being forwarded to the full membership at its annual conference in June for acceptance.
The inability of Cricket Australia and New Zealand Cricket to agree on a candidate forced their boards to form a nominations committee under an independent chairman, Australian businessman Sir Rod Eddington.
A joint statement from Cricket Australia chairman Jack Clarke and his New Zealand counterpart Alan Isaac said Eddington had steered the parties to agreement.
"We are pleased that an eminent candidate in John Howard has agreed, after an exhaustive process, to take the role of joint Australia-New Zealand nominee for the ICC presidency," the statement said.
"It was an extremely difficult decision and ultimately relied on the input of Sir Rod Eddington, whom both cricket boards respect enormously.".
Howard said he was honored and humbled to receive the joint endorsement.
"It is a great honor to be nominated by Cricket Australia and New Zealand Cricket for the vice-presidency of the International Cricket Council from June-July 2010," he said in a statement. "Cricket has been one of my lifelong passions and, if the ICC accepts my nomination, it will be a privilege to serve this great game."