Australia won't renominate Howard for ICC role

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src='' class='caption'> CA said it would not renominate former Australian prime minister John Howard to take over the leadership of the sport's international governing body.

Updated: July 30, 2010 08:46 IST
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Cricket Australia said on Friday it would not renominate former Australian prime minister John Howard to take over the leadership of the sport's international governing body.

CA said Howard was its best available candidate and had decided not to consider suggesting any other names, and instead would support New Zealand Cricket's nomination of Alan Isaac for the position of vice-president of the International Cricket Council (ICC).

Howard, a passionate cricket lover, was put forward as Australia and New Zealand's joint candidate for the ICC's rotating vice presidency, with the expectation that he would be rubber-stamped as its president in two years.

But the ICC refused to vote on his nomination after a reported revolt by Asian and African cricketing powers, calling instead for Australia and New Zealand to put forward a new candidate.

"The CA board accepts that the New Zealand nominee, Mr Alan Isaac, is eminently qualified to fill the role of ICC vice-president and president, and given the stance of the ICC Executive Board with the nomination of Mr Howard, will support his name being forwarded to the ICC for ratification," CA said in a statement.

"The Board is disappointed and most concerned by the ICC Executive Board's lack of support of his (Howard's) nomination and regards it as completely unacceptable that no reason has been provided as to why he has not been accepted.

"In the circumstances, the CA Board is not prepared to nominate any other candidate for the role."

Howard's rejection earlier this month was condemned by the Australian and New Zealand prime ministers, Julia Gillard and John Key.

Key slammed the ICC's "shocking" snub of Howard, while Gillard, facing a general election next month, said she offered her full support for Howard to get the role.

CA chairman Jack Clarke said that while his board remained strong in its view that Howard continued to be its best candidate, a fresh approach was needed.

"We are not prepared to suggest another candidate but given it is clear Mr Howard will not be supported, we clearly have to consider a new approach," Clarke said in the statement.

"Accordingly, we are pleased to support New Zealand Cricket's suggestion that Alan Isaac be nominated for the role.

"Alan has a strong cricket and sporting administrative background but the relevant benefit he brings to the table is his strong record as an expert practitioner and adviser in organisational governance and his business and financial acumen."

New Zealand Cricket chief executive Justin Vaughan told AFP that New Zealand "was also very disappointed with the rejection of John Howard's nomination by the ICC but believe Alan Isaac is an outstanding nominee."

Isaac, a chartered accountant, has been on the board of New Zealand Cricket for 20 years and became chairman in 2008. He was described by Vaughan as an excellent strategist and thinker.

Isaac said it would be inappropriate for him to comment on the nomination, given that it still required ICC acceptance.

Haroon Lorgat, the ICC's chief executive, has refused to reveal why Howard's name was rejected, telling a news conference in Singapore earlier this month that the ICC "does not have to give those reasons".

But it is understood that opposition from Asian and African nations sealed the fate of Howard, who clashed repeatedly with some of the countries opposed to his ICC bid when he was Australia's prime minister from 1996 to 2007.

The ICC has denied there was a rift between Asian and African Test-playing nations and Australia, New Zealand and England, which also supported Howard's bid, or that it had anything to do with politics.

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  • Gregory Stephen Chappell

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