Colombo (ANI): Cricket Australia CEO James Sutherland will arrive in Sri Lanka today on a 24-hour mission to ease concerns among touring players about the ramifications of the damning Argus report.
Sutherland will brief players at their Colombo hotel as well as members of the team’s support staff, including deposed selector Greg Chappell, before returning immediately to begin the process of implementing recommendations of the 40-page independent report released last Friday.
Chappell declined to comment yesterday when asked by the Herald for his reaction to the review of Australian cricket operations, which made him a primary scapegoat by concluding it was not appropriate for the national talent manager, a post he occupies, to be a selector.
Sutherland’s main objective today is to calm tension and confusion about the post-Ashes shake-up, a restructure announced while Australia’s Test and one-day players are out of the country.
“He’s coming to send a clear message to the player group that the major Argus recommendations are to do with structure and not people,” a Cricket Australia spokesman said of Sutherland’s flying visit.
He added: “What Argus found is that the structures in place are not adequate for the current era of cricket. This is not about re-arranging the deck chairs on the ship. It’s about rebuilding the ship. I’m sure he’ll take the opportunity to speak to everyone that it has affected, not just the players but the support group as well.”
The chief executive’s last-minute stopover was also to formalise the most immediate of the Argus changes – expanding the Australian selection panel to include the captain, Michael Clarke, and the coach, Tim Nielsen, who must reapply for his position.
Cricket Australia last night was still to decide whether Chappell would remain in Sri Lanka as on-duty selector for the upcoming three-match Test series, which starts in Galle on Wednesday week.