SYDNEY: Two reviews into the state of Australian cricket sparked by the ball-tampering scandal are ‘confronting’, Cricket Australia (CA) board member Mark Taylor warned on Sunday ahead of their release.
One is focused on the culture within the sport’s governing body and the other into the national team.
They are due to be made public on Monday, six months after CA commissioned them following the cheating furore in Cape Town this year.
Taylor said there were 41 recommendations.
"I have seen the review. It will be hard-hitting, confronting for CA and for anyone who loves the game of cricket,” the former Australian Test skipper told Channel Nine.
“Everything is on the table.”
The scandal involved Australian players using sandpaper to alter the flight of the ball in a Test match against South Africa last March.
Coach Darren Lehmann quit in the wake of the uproar and then-captain Steve Smith, deputy David Warner and batsman Cameron Bancroft were banned from the game.
The backlash rocked Australian cricket to its core, undermining the long-held notion that its players were ‘tough but fair’.
Critics blamed a win-at-all-costs mentality that they said developed under CA chief executive James Sutherland and his management team.
CA previously denied the charge but set up the two separate inquiries to examine how the scandal occurred.
“All of us have had too much negativity around the game,” said Taylor. “Tomorrow [Monday] is the opportunity to get it out there. There is no doubt there is a mandate, as I would look at it, in these reviews for CA to make some change, to get better at what we do, and also, most importantly, to get on with how we do business with people.
“And we have got to get that better. No doubt about that. I have said that before.”
Sutherland, who departed last week after 17 years in charge, said lessons had been learned from the overwhelming public disgust over the issue.
“It’s a reminder to everyone as to how important cricket is and the pedestal on which the Australian cricket team is held and the expectations that come with being an Australian cricketer,” he said.
Published in Dawn, October 29th , 2018
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