Australia news

Hilditch gone as chairman of selectors

Brydon Coverdale and Daniel Brettig

August 19, 2011

Comments: 131 | Text size: A | A

Andrew Hilditch and Greg Chappell at Australia's net session, Brisbane, November 24, 2010
Andrew Hilditch (left) won't be Australia's chairman of selectors any longer, while Greg Chappell has been removed from the panel © Getty Images
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Who is Don Argus?

  • Don Argus, or to use the nickname he earned during a 50-year business career, Don't Argue, is one of Australia's most-senior boardroom figures. For a decade until his retirement last year, Argus, now 73, was the chairman of BHP Billiton, the global mining giant; early in his tenure he oversaw the merger between BHP and the African-based Billiton. During those years he also served as the chairman of the logistics firm, Brambles.
  • Prior to that, he was chief executive of the National Australia Bank, having joined the bank's staff in his native Bundaberg, in Queensland, as an 18-year-old. Argus has a reputation as a forceful businessman - hence the nickname - and hasn't been without his critics, but he remains a well-respected figure and last year was made a Companion of the Order of Australia (AC), the highest honour given in Australia since knighthoods were effectively abolished in 1983.
  • And with a record like that, who'd argue?

Cricket Australia has effected sweeping changes in the running of the national game, from the top-most levels, while ratifying several key recommendations from the Argus review. It decided to appoint a full-time national selector, ending Andrew Hilditch's tenure as Australia's chairman of selectors, and also removed Greg Chappell from the selection panel, while asking the coach Tim Nielsen to re-apply for his job.

The Argus review was set up to investigate Australia's team performance following their Ashes debacle last summer and its wide-ranging investigation has pointed to problems at every level. At the top are the selectors, and the review has recommended a five-man selection panel with a full-time chairman and two independent selectors, while the captain and coach have also been given increased responsibility and will become selectors.

The national talent manager, Chappell, won't be part of the group. Jack Clarke, the CA chairman, said the newly-created position of national selector would be a full-time role and had therefore ruled out Hilditch, who also works as a solicitor in Adelaide, although Clarke was unsure whether Hilditch would apply to stay on the panel as one of the two part-time selectors.

"The position is a full-time role," Clarke said. "Andrew is not available to work full time. He has just started up a new legal practice so he is not available to apply for the role. I haven't spoken to Andrew about [whether he wants to stay on the panel]. He's certainly unavailable for the top job."

Hilditch said in a statement: "I fully support the recommendation of the review panel to appoint a full-time chairman of the national selection panel and the appointment of the captain and coach as members of the panel. It is a structure I supported as appropriate when interviewed by the review panel and I think it will serve Australian cricket well going into the future.

"They were always going to be difficult years as chairman with the exodus of so many great players but I have given it my all and always acted to the best of my ability to achieve the best outcome for Australian cricket. Once the new head selector is appointed I look forward to spending a lot more time with family and friends and my growing legal practice. It has been a privilege and an honour to serve Australian cricket."

Nielsen and Australia's captain, Michael Clarke, will immediately be made selectors for the ongoing tour of Sri Lanka, while Chappell, who is with the team as the selector on duty, will temporarily remain in the job while the new structure is finalised. However, Nielsen's future is uncertain, with the coach's position to be expanded to become a more senior role, leading the overall coaching strategy for Australian cricket, and he is not guaranteed of getting the job.

"Coaching the Australian team is a tough job anyway with the travel and that sort of thing," Jack Clarke said. "It's going to take some additional time and skill sets to put a strategy for the whole of Australian coaching. We need to align the coaching so that there's one philosophy which the head coach has got to be able to articulate and get that through to the state coaches and all other coaches in the system.

"Tim can apply for the job and he may well get the job. But it's a different role, and in a restructure, you don't just give someone the job in a new role."

Another key change will be the appointment of a general manager of team performance, who will report to the CEO and oversee coaching, selection and the Centre of Excellence. The position is similar to the role Hugh Morris now fills for the England team, a job the ECB created after the Schofield Report into their disastrous Ashes series in 2006-07.

In his opening remarks, Clarke conceded that Australian cricket's custodians had more or less sat on their hands towards the end of an era of great success, and had not been proactive enough in dealing with the looming problems posed by the retirements of great players and the change in the Australian team's profile.

"It is clear with the wisdom of hindsight there are some issues that could've been addressed earlier. The right time for fundamental change to structures and processes is not always easy to pick, particularly with a system that has worked so well for so long," Clarke said.

"Sustained on-field success may well have masked some problems - in a sense we were victims of our own success, and if you won in a certain way you were probably less likely to change your ways. However it is quite clear the world has moved on, and a system that once worked is now in need of change. In doing this we have not taken a short-term approach, looking for scapegoats or applied band-aids to problems.

"It might be argued we should've done more to replace the great players who retired recently, having said that it is not easy to replace players the calibre of Warne, McGrath, Gilchrist, Hayden and others of the era."

Paul Marsh, the chief executive of the Australian Cricketers Association, commended CA and the review panel for their thoroughness.

"I commend Cricket Australia and the Argus review panel for their thoroughness and transparency," Marsh told ESPNcricinfo. "The players want to see Australian cricket back at the top as much as anyone, and we are glad to see that desire shown so strongly in the review."

CA directors were handed an executive summary of the Argus review findings at the conclusion of the first day of Thursday's board meeting, before Argus led a detailed presentation to the board on Friday morning. The recommendations stemmed from a most exhaustive review undertaken into the drastically waning fortunes of the Australian side, culminating in an Ashes defeat that included an unprecedented three innings hidings.

Australia are fifth on the ICC's Test rankings, and are in danger of missing out on a place in the inaugural Test match World Championship, to be held in 2013. The team is in the midst of a tour of Sri Lanka, the first Test assignment for the new captain Michael Clarke, and players and officials - including Chappell, the selector on duty - were briefed on the review findings before public discussions commenced.

Chaired by Argus, the review panel included the former captains Allan Border, Mark Taylor and Steve Waugh, plus Malcolm Speed, formerly the chief executive of Cricket Australia and more recently the ICC. Speed's CA successor, James Sutherland, sat in on the process as an ex-officio, non-voting member, but interviewees were allowed to request his absence if they felt uncomfortable discussing problems in front of their current boss.

A total of 61 interviews were conducted, across a spectrum that included players, coaches, officials, media and other well-placed observers. Senior figures from other sports were also consulted, including the multiple-premiership winning Australian Rules football coach Mick Malthouse.

Click here to read the entire Argus review.

Brydon Coverdale and Daniel Brettig are assistant editors at ESPNcricinfo

RSS Feeds: Brydon Coverdale

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by   on (August 21, 2011, 15:58 GMT)

wow that was too early ;), Greg has already done his job. Now let Ian write couple of columns and defend him again.

Posted by jonesy2 on (August 21, 2011, 9:12 GMT)

RandyOZ - is my boy. nice work randy.

Posted by Okakaboka on (August 21, 2011, 9:02 GMT)

No...We don't want Bucchanan...heaven help us! Geez, he follows the United States Philosophies (land of the giant dropkick) and exhibits power point presentations while playing survival and trust games with the players. Damien Fleming, Darren Berry, Stuart Clark, or Jason Gillespie would all be great. Lawyers and American Economists are banned from cricket Australia...I said so!!!...um....well, we said so (All cricket fans of Australia!)

Posted by moinilyasneral on (August 21, 2011, 6:51 GMT)

Hilditch, Neilsen AND MOST IMPORTANTLY Greg Chappel needed a good kick up their backsides out of CA's rank and file. Where is Buchanan...bring him back even if CA has to grovel. Greg screwed Indian Cricket after John Wright had at least brought them up to a position of respectablity , and it was only thanks to Gary Kirsten that they came up to # 1 in Tests(sadly gone now) and won the World Cup 2011. Feeling is, even Fletcher has to go soon from Indian team..bring in an Indian ex cricketer who has done well in the past, and is able to give his all to the team like Gary did. Should be athletic even now, so it rules out Gavaskar, Shastri and Saurav.My best options would be Kumble and Vengsarkar...of the foreigners, why not Stephen Fleming? He has done fabulously with Chennai S.K.

Posted by   on (August 21, 2011, 6:18 GMT)

Lesson from the selectors of not to ruin our team.

Posted by Meety on (August 21, 2011, 4:42 GMT)

@RandyOZ - Sutherland & the Board are up for a seperate review, so their judgement day is coming.

Posted by   on (August 20, 2011, 11:29 GMT)

Oh people this is bad. Australia will become best once again. I am completely against removal of Greg chappal from australian selection panel. Come on India shout " we want chappal back"

Posted by AlanHarrison on (August 20, 2011, 11:29 GMT)

So, as expected Australia sack Hilditch and Chappell, even though they gave them the chance to make a hash of selecting one last squad to Sri Lanka knowing how likely they were to lose thier jobs anyway and so were given no incentive to pick a squad thoughtfully. Where is the sense in that? They way Australian cricket is run these days is so farcical it reminds me of English cricket in the 1980s. When Katich describe Cricket Australia as amateurs, it was unnecessarilinsulting to amateurs.

Posted by 5why on (August 20, 2011, 10:58 GMT)

Greg Chappell destroyed Indian cricket first, then went on to destroy another institutuion, Cricket Australia, in quick succession.

Those who were enamoured of Chappell and threw out Saurav Ganguly, are you still in the mud ? You can come clean now.

Posted by   on (August 20, 2011, 9:13 GMT)

Now, people of India should realize who was right when DADA (sourav ganguly ) was thrown out of his team , it is due due to greg chapell who ruined our Indian team during (2005-2007)..

Posted by   on (August 20, 2011, 9:05 GMT)

I think it's the right move. I hope BCCI learns from this as they will have the same problem with senior players retiring.

Posted by   on (August 20, 2011, 8:44 GMT)

West Indies Cricket Board officials need to take serious note, and implement similar reports currently before them. It is my firm view that these officials are puting their personal ego before the interset of WI Cricket. If the right processes and decisions were made, India should have left the West Indies on thier most recent tour a beaten side. So too Pakistan. My hope is that CARICOM, as a body, should have a greater oversight / influence on West Indies Cricket. It is very sickening to the way West Indies Cricket ic currently managed, not addressing critical problems with due process and attention.

Posted by   on (August 20, 2011, 6:51 GMT)

Finally. Greg Chappell's second reign in a position of power of the premier Australian team has had the same effect. after 25 years, most people would have been expected to have learned something...He hasn't.

Posted by   on (August 20, 2011, 6:46 GMT)

CA - Remember this simple logic, TO MANY COOKS SPOILS THE SOUP........everyone give 150 thousand orders and ideas but on the playing field it's the players talent, skill and ability to cope with pressure that matters.......good example Steve Waugh.

Posted by RightArmEverything on (August 20, 2011, 5:38 GMT)

I'm not sure if CA aren't just complicating things more. There are too many selectors, too many coaches, too many people involved, too many lines of communication. Pick 3 selectors who know what it takes to succeed at Test level over a long period of time, who have a commonsense approach to selection, clear thinkers and good communicators. Rod Marsh would be a good choice. A fresh start. Current/recent selectors and Nielsen shouldn't be considered. Better off giving the top coaching job to Steve Rixon, recently appointed fielding coach - he's tough, focussed and sounds like the players like him. Shouldn't need a batting coach - get rid of Langer. Bowling department has been pretty weak though so maybe see how McDermott goes there, maybe he can get Johnson back to his best.

Posted by Dashgar on (August 20, 2011, 5:24 GMT)

@Shotworth I hope not, Katich has a bad attitude and won't help this team develop. My XI after Ponting and Hussey hopefully retire at the end of the summer is this Watson, Hughes, Khawaja, Cosgrove, Clarke (c), Butterworth, Wade, Johnson, O'Keefe, Siddle, Copeland. This is based on performances in the past, performances in Shield cricket and also on looking to the future.

Posted by Shotworth on (August 20, 2011, 3:20 GMT)

Does this mean that sanity may prevail again and Simon Katich will get reinstated to the Test team ?

Posted by aracer on (August 20, 2011, 2:54 GMT)

@RandyOz - you just make yourself look silly with the tired old "South Africans playing for England" comment. Our home grown top order of Strauss (he might have been SA born, but raised in England and played all his cricket here), Cook, Bell doesn't look so shabby. I think most English fans would agree with you about Bopara, but if you think there isn't better than him ready to step in then you've really not been paying attention - many think James Taylor should have been preferred to him having shown superb form all season in A internationals, and several others queuing up behind him. Of course our best home-grown batsman hasn't played international cricket since 2006 :( I feel a bit guilty posting comments as an England supporter on an Aussie article, but if you will go Pom bashing on here. Back on topic, it's nice to be in a position where I wish you well with your reforms - but not too well ;)

Posted by KAIRAVA on (August 20, 2011, 2:34 GMT)

BCCI should also conduct a similar autopsy of Team India's dismal performance in the latest Pataudi trophy series whitewash of India. Time for Srikkanth & Fletcher to go home.

Posted by hyclass on (August 20, 2011, 1:41 GMT)

Of the changes suggested,the selection ones including the captain and coach are the weakest.Ponting being overburdened was one of the primary reasons behind his loss of form over 4 years,according to Buchanan.Also,the coach should never be a selector.He is a confidante to the players and being a selector removes that relationship.There are better ways to make him accountable. This Review zeroed in on communication being a key.Having the captain/coach in this role opposes that.@inswing, i see no evidence supporting your position.Hardly surprising.I couldnt disagree more with you.@whoster,yours is no better.There is some foolish idea that the last generation arrived as stars and left at their peak.Many had 2 or more chances at test level including Hayden,Langer,Martyn,Waugh and Ponting.Only Warne and McGrath arrived as the finished item.Hayden and Gilchrist were in decline at the end.Langer and Martyn werent irreplaceable.They didnt all retire together.Quality replacements were ignored.

Posted by   on (August 20, 2011, 1:32 GMT)

so far this report told us a whole lot of nothing

Posted by RandyOZ on (August 20, 2011, 0:42 GMT)

@ashes61, The reason for England's no 1 ranking is due to their lack of home grown talent, they play in the county circuit which proves how valuable it is, but the fact is without your host of South Africans you'd just be a bowling unit with no-one to bat! I mean just look at it now, you lose trott and who comes in? Bopara hahaha. Absolutely no depth in the batting department!

Posted by Wozza-CY on (August 19, 2011, 23:55 GMT)

@Landl47- You are quite right to point out that it is only people shuffling at this stage & the real challenge is to find the right people to implement what are good recommendations. I think Oz fans this is not a magic wand that will instantly fix Australian cricket, but what you are seeing in these comments is a huge sigh of relief that change is afoot. I'd be interested to see if any of the panel oversees any of the recommendations, I think they should. Good to see so many positive comments from supporters outside Oz. Englands 'Schofield' report was very specific & it took some time to implement but they did it well. The success Eng are reaping now has come on the back of many many years of hard work, searching for the right people which started with Rod Marsh identifying people like Cook, Bell, Strauss, Anderson etc. Oz will have to exactly the same.

Posted by Maui3 on (August 19, 2011, 23:03 GMT)

Chappell removed. Duh! Seems like it's all bad news for Indian supporters - from England and now from Australia :-)

Posted by Truemans_Ghost on (August 19, 2011, 22:57 GMT)

Good old Argus! I thought England won the Ashes because their players played well and Australia's didn't. Turned out it had nothing to do with the players. It was lots of other peoples fault!

Posted by samuel69 on (August 19, 2011, 22:39 GMT)

Honestly the only way to bring down England is someone should persuadeECB to hire Greg Chapel in their coaching staff, surely BCCI will foot the bill.

Posted by Jaga2011 on (August 19, 2011, 22:16 GMT)

good times ahead for you aussies..chappell finally gone...you will head for an uptrend just like we did

Posted by ashes61 on (August 19, 2011, 21:32 GMT)

Continuing from where I just left off. Doesn't really seem to be a very comprehensive set of changes, but perhaps a complete overhaul of the selection/coaching set-up isn't required. Is there not a serious structural problem in Oz? Have you completely surrendered to the marketing men? A very dangerous route. (Don't worry, we've made that mistake too - Sandford very nearly made a terrible mess of us!) Look how the Ashes 1st Test team was picked & marketed back in Nov! And what's all this BBL business? If AUS wants to get a decent Test side back (what else matters at that level?) then you've got to ditch this idea of giving T20 any more rope. MORE T20? Your Shield cricketers will NOT improve, nor will your Test players! I don't see AUS moving up the Test rankings much at all yet (other than to meet India coming down fast) although several countries are weak now. Not just "Pom talk", but this ENG side will be light years ahead for some while, altho' India will NOT trouble 11 fit Aussies!

Posted by ashes61 on (August 19, 2011, 21:05 GMT)

These things interest the Poms, too, as we had years of putting up with a dysfunctional system which prevented talent from fulfilling itself. Only in the last decade has a root & branch sort-out and a gradual fine-tuning of a better system improved results and finally produced an excellent senior team. The travails of the '90s led to our copying many Australian ideas (your Academy for instance) and now we have excellent organisation, the right peiople in place and, it has to be said, the ability to throw money around for coaches on every skill, regular Lions tours, etc. I doubt if there was much wrong with your system, but the wrong people may well have been running things.The criticism of Hilditch etc on this forum during the Ashes was a real eye-opener - as were his selections! I may be wrong but I suspect Shield cricket is not that strong at the moment. That's the future of Aussie cricket, where typically tough Aussie Test players learn their trade - NOT in this silly BBL nonsense.

Posted by inswing on (August 19, 2011, 21:01 GMT)

Changes to the selection panel will accomplish little. Whenever a team performs below expectations, the sword falls on the selectors. The underlying assumption is that better players were actually available but not selected. This happens to be wrong almost always. Most of the time, 9 or 10 players are practically automatic - any panel would select them. The question is usually about one, at most two spots. There are players of roughly equal ability and form who are available. When the team does badly, it is foolish to blame that one choice, as if selecting the other player instead would have turned a big loss into a win. Often, that one questionable player played reasonably well, it is the established players who were out of form and cause a loss. This cannot be blamed on the selectors. The problem for Australia (and India) is not that better players were not selected - it is that better players do not exist. That's why changing selectors always fails to lift losing teams.

Posted by whoster on (August 19, 2011, 20:41 GMT)

There's so much emphasis on structure and coaching in today's cricket, but the bottom line is Australia don't have anywhere near the quality of players it had four or five years ago. The Aussie selectors have certainly made mistakes - especially their treatment of Hauritz, a decent spinner sacrificed by trying out every spinner in State cricket in the hope of finding another Warne. The Aussies had a golden age of talent, but now the selectors have to realise today's resources aren't so plentiful. They need to identify the young players and back them, just like England have done with players like Broad, Bell and Cook. Each of these players has had vociferous calls to be dropped at some stage of their careers, but the selectors backed their judgement and are now reaping the benefits. It might get worse for the Aussies before it gets better - certainly hope so!

Posted by   on (August 19, 2011, 20:20 GMT)

I wish other countries such as West Indies take stock of this as this why Australia is always ahead

Posted by PETERZYE on (August 19, 2011, 19:31 GMT)

I do not understand why these sweeping changes have occurred in Australian Cricket. Australia is my least favourite team of all the Test playing nations but I just cannot comprehend why the Australian team and management have come under such scrutiny. Maybe I was in a coma for the past 10- 15 years, but during my 'comatose' period didn't Australia dominate world cricket? Please tell me that they did. If they did dominate over the aforementioned period, then why these sudden and DRASTIC changes. I believe that these changes were implemented because of personality conflicts, not for improving Australia's cricket. Batsmen and bowlers have lean periods, and so too teams. This overhaul of Cricket Australia was too sudden for me to concur with the Angus Report. Even if Australia are 5th in the world, the gap between 1 and 5 is not exceptionally wide. In a given year any of the top 5 teams can be number 1. It is not time to panic Cricket Australia! Work out your personality conflicts first!!

Posted by Blazedragon on (August 19, 2011, 19:03 GMT)

@Farooq Malik: No Australia dominated till 07. There was no problem with the team when Warne and Mcgrath were around. They won mostly everything in the mid 2000's.

Posted by saivich on (August 19, 2011, 18:07 GMT)

I think the spirit of Argus review is perfect. I am sure this review will shake up Australian cricket in a good way. As an India supporter, I would like to note that if India keeps sliding down the ICC rankings a review of such a nature would be sorely needed let us call it. I understand that things may change but after this bad English mid-summer nightmare, my projections for team India are not exactly optimistic.

Posted by   on (August 19, 2011, 17:58 GMT)

I hope they realize that the decline had started in the mid 2000s it just became more apparent recently. Just hussey himself has saved the team from major debacle in the years before the ashes defeat at home, even when mcgrath and warne were around.

Posted by Lord.emsworth on (August 19, 2011, 16:21 GMT)

Thnx Mr. Coverdale for inviting us ordinary folks to comment unlike your solo reports on the ongoing ODI's. There will always be upheavals in cricket boards of any country. Nobodys perfect. Yet, Australia must come to terms that they do not have the same players and prospects to choose from as they had in the heydays of Chapple, Taylor and Pont. They are in transition, although in a lesser degree than the WI. A lot of WI fans blame baseball and other sports for their current lack of playing nous. Australia in recent years are an allround sports nation winning loads of olympic medals etc. Perhaps its this top level diversification of sports that is at fault?

Posted by   on (August 19, 2011, 15:59 GMT)

@NRI Well framed statement abt GC !!!

Posted by   on (August 19, 2011, 15:57 GMT)

@Antomann I had the same feelings just for the title I read the article, double like for the sub title

Posted by   on (August 19, 2011, 15:36 GMT)

thats good for ozs!!!!!!!!

Posted by Alexk400 on (August 19, 2011, 15:31 GMT)

I want Lalit modi back in the BCCI mould as GM in charge of TEST team. :)

Posted by Antomann on (August 19, 2011, 14:26 GMT)

Just that sub-heading 'Chappell removed'. I wept for joy.

Posted by   on (August 19, 2011, 14:05 GMT)

WOW...I love the way Aussies are so clinical in their process hence they will be back at the top soon. While Indians will be back wehn they get another Tendulkar or dravid or laxman who happen inspite of the system not becuase of it

Posted by 12433729 on (August 19, 2011, 13:50 GMT)

@kickittome70...i have a feeling warnie has some more attractive things on his mind at the moment...

Posted by Webba84 on (August 19, 2011, 13:43 GMT)

@here2rock: The system hasn't worked for the last 20 years, its been getting worse and worse. We just never noticed because of all the names you mentioned. Now it's clean up time.

Posted by ElPhenomeno on (August 19, 2011, 13:42 GMT)

The truth is, every board, every country has problems. When australian greats ruled the planet, australian board was hailed as the most functional one, australian cricket structure was called the benchmark. Every board wanted an australian coach and team of physios.

Now that those legends have departed the same board is ridiculed as the most dysfunctional one. :)

Its easy to get rid of people, but if the talent is not there, its simply not there. You cannot produce a warne, ponting, gilchrist and mcgrath every year. Those are once in a lifetime players.

Posted by Guthers007 on (August 19, 2011, 13:20 GMT)

The review outcomes appear to be excellent and a great way forward for Australian Cricket.

I must say that I am constantly amazed when Australian cricket officials regularly refer to recent retired greats and always, and I mean always, fail to mention Justin Langer. he always is slotted into the "and others category."

Who is this Jack Clarke, any how?

Posted by Green_and_Gold on (August 19, 2011, 13:16 GMT)

@Land47 - You have an interesting reflection on these events. You say in your comments that all they've done so far is get rid of people however as a result of the review there is now a change in the way the selection of the national squad is managed. Its true that people leaving is part of this process however i like to think that the review has given much more than a list of names to get rid of. I do agree on your point regarding the need to get the right people in and sometimes it can be trial and error in finding the right combo that works. At least in this case we have finally realised that the current method dont work and are trying something else.

Posted by NRI- on (August 19, 2011, 12:43 GMT)

A great batsman, an ordinary coach, a good talent scout and a harmful, hopeless, clueless selector - that will be Greg Chappell's legacy. A talent scout goes looking into the youth camps and that causes him to select youth at the expense of better but older players - so a talent scout should never be a selector.

Posted by Ms.Cricket on (August 19, 2011, 12:38 GMT)

How about Ponting's mediocre captaincy, Neilson's ineffective coaching and Sutherland's lack of vision and leadership? How have they escaped from more scathing criticism in the report?

Posted by siddharth_r2001 on (August 19, 2011, 12:18 GMT)

agree with @shortofalength. so now that's 2 international teams where Greg Chappell has been kicked out of a top job! If Australia do go on and improve from here on, it will be in no small measure due to the removal of Greg Chappell. See India, they actually won the WC whereas they could not even beat Bangladesh even Chappell was their coach!!

Posted by TeamRocker on (August 19, 2011, 12:16 GMT)

Yipee! Yipee! Yipee! Hilditch and Chappell gone! Can this possibly lead to the Aussies getting back to (somewhat) what they used to be?

Posted by trahlee on (August 19, 2011, 12:07 GMT)

Really, this should arrest Australia's decline - the new regime will surely do better.

Posted by CricketChat on (August 19, 2011, 12:04 GMT)

It is heartening to see CA does not take short cuts and willing to make hard decisions to get things right. No wonder, they are always a step or two ahead of their opponents. I have no doubt non-performers will be shown the door and new talent will be brought to the fore again. It won't be long before Aussies ascend to the top. BTW, I hope they will not discard Chappell completely and make use of his great wealth of knowledge to train the youngsters, which is where he suits best.

Posted by jupiterlaw on (August 19, 2011, 12:02 GMT)

Well Greg Chappell should be the least surprised, he should have seen it coming. For the Ashes, he made some optimistic predictions about Australia that bore no resemblance to the outcome. As a result, he lost credibility in the public's eyes and, evidently, in the eyes of the Australian Board.

Posted by mangocube6 on (August 19, 2011, 11:45 GMT)

Halleluliah... a new beginning after years on ineptitude.

Posted by mautan on (August 19, 2011, 11:40 GMT)

Do whatever and get Katich in for bigger series..Dravid, Sachin and Laxman are 38 whereas Katich is about 36. Aus needs that experience in the middle to grind a Indian kind of attack. Hopefullly with all these changes happening, ACB has indicated they were wrong..so why not correct one very obvious wrong doing of dropping Katich??

Posted by kickittome70 on (August 19, 2011, 11:35 GMT)

Well, well boys what a day - double happiness. I never liked Nielsen. Dud yobbo from Sth Australia - we have missed the boat. When Buchanan was retired, we had a huge choice. I really think that Warnie could be a great transitional coach. Bear in mind that most ex Aussie players (who played with him) hate his guts but this may be a good thing. Then again advertise the role to a global market and see what happens. Great day. Hilditch is just not up to it. Really strange how he lasted so long, but it is a testament to the strength of the side until the legends retired.

Posted by   on (August 19, 2011, 11:07 GMT)

Finally some common sense prevailed. With Rod Marsh, Taylor and Steve Waugh in the selection panel and Clarke in charge of the team, don't see any reason why they won't be where they always belonged. Fair to say WC is going back to down under.

Posted by   on (August 19, 2011, 11:01 GMT)

Best decision of all time by CA!! I like it......

Posted by here2rock on (August 19, 2011, 10:55 GMT)

SFay, the reason I said it is panic and mess is that I don't think that there is much wrong with the Australian Cricket. When you lose Glchrist, McGrath, Warne, Hayden and Langer to name a few then no matter what is your system you are going to lose some ground. Not long ago the Australian System was the envy of the world and now all those changes! The system has worked for the last two decades so what was wrong with it?

Posted by landl47 on (August 19, 2011, 10:39 GMT)

Perhaps I should point out, as no-one else has done so, that all they've done so far is get rid of people. That's the easy part. Finding people who can run a decent system and put together a good coaching and playing staff is the hard part. England did the easy part pretty well, too, but didn't get to the present successful set-up immediately (remember Moores and Pietersen?). Wait until you see who is appointed and what they do before celebrating the rebirth of Australian cricket. Unless the right people are put in place, it will just be swapping one unsuccessful system for another. The ominous words "Tim can apply for the job and he may well get the job" should make Auusie fans wonder whether this really is the new dawn. Personally, I hope it is- cricket needs a strong Australia.

Posted by 12433729 on (August 19, 2011, 10:36 GMT)

Credit to cricket australia for making the report public. Too many of these types of reviews get buried and forgotten about far too quickly. Pity there was no recommendation for recalling Katich to the test side.

Posted by shortofalength on (August 19, 2011, 10:29 GMT)

The dead hand of G Chappell has been removed thats a good step. He has demoralised better teams than this with his presence, SA QLD India all have improved when he has moved on. Hilditch has been found wanting when selectors actually needed some insight, Anyone could have picked McGrath, Warne Gilchrist and co. The contract system needs urgent attention. Bit part 20/20 and one day players are on more money than Test players.Shield emphasis on youth should be changed to allow experienced players to play with up and comers. The step from Shield to Test has become too big because young players are only playing against their own age and experience. The report is a good start.

Posted by TheDoctor394 on (August 19, 2011, 10:25 GMT)

Greg Chappell certainly seems to court controversy when on these panels. Maybe he should try something easier, and maybe go for the job with Pakistan?

Posted by   on (August 19, 2011, 10:22 GMT)

when the best you come up with is siddle and doug the rug and xavier not even the ghost of victor trumper could pick and decent side for australia . you got licks to come for many years CA

Posted by annys on (August 19, 2011, 10:12 GMT)

when will this sort of a thing happen in India :(

Posted by chappelis_last_blast on (August 19, 2011, 9:56 GMT)

Good start to return to a solid test playing team, getting back to no.1 only happens if you have 5 matchwinners in your side. They have Ponting but he is a long way from his best and Mitch Johnson is far too inconsistent but definatley has x factor. Shane Watson is really it at the moment. The current English side has KP, Swann, Cook, Anderson and Broad (who is far away from his potential). The early 2000's Australians had Warne,McGrath,Hayden,Ponting,M and S Waugh,Gilchrist and even Langer were consistent matchwinners. I think Callum Ferguson will get there with some tests under his belt

Posted by JPrats on (August 19, 2011, 9:48 GMT)

Where Mr.Chappel is there trouble is, so I am not surprised at all. In fact unlike BCCI the CA was quick enough to realize the stand and take some radical decisions!!! Well done CA.

Posted by Chetan007 on (August 19, 2011, 9:43 GMT)

Great!!!! It was good to see the Australian resolving their mistakes. It will certainly be good for the Australian cricket. No doubt...........

Posted by demon_bowler on (August 19, 2011, 9:32 GMT)

Oh no, England's special agent has been rumbled! The least we can do is recall him to the Motherland and give him a knighthood for services to English cricket (1985-2011). Thank you, Andrew Hilditch.

Posted by jonesy2 on (August 19, 2011, 9:23 GMT)

the indian fans who want to know who is behind this report it is the don argus the former boss of BHP billiton

Posted by nikhilbengeri on (August 19, 2011, 9:21 GMT)

Greg Chappel was only n only a gud batsman. But never even an ordinary selector, or a coach. His mere presence has demoralised so many great teams with greater individuals in it.. Dunno wat his ideas are upto. But yeah, overall a good initiative for the Cricket Australia. I wish them all the very best for the future of the Australian Cricket.

Posted by ddrath on (August 19, 2011, 9:20 GMT)

this is the best thing happened to AUS cricket! well not that much getting rid of hiditch (because -he is influnced by Chappell No question about it) but having Chappell out of the selection panel because he makes a bigg mess anywhere he goes!!i understand he is GREAT batsman!! but Not in selection or man management!! NO WAY Katich should be out of the team!!!

Posted by   on (August 19, 2011, 9:14 GMT)

Love it. Now the nonsense illogical minds that ended the career of Stuart Clark and did their best to end that of Nathan Hauritz are gone. Let common sense prevail.

Posted by   on (August 19, 2011, 9:12 GMT)

Thank god. See ya Hilditch you dud. Now can we recall Katich and Bollinger to the test XI?

Posted by asadnathan on (August 19, 2011, 9:09 GMT)

Chappell has uccessfully managed to ruin Indian team and australian.

Posted by warnerbasher on (August 19, 2011, 9:08 GMT)

Its a well considered,thought out report. There really is no excuse for some of the performances dished up by Australia last summer allthough in hindsight those defeats may be the turning point. The removal of Chappell from anything to do with Australian cricket can only be a plus given what he did to india. In my view the national contracts are handed out far to easily to undeserving players who are rewarded before they perform. The talent is definitely there its just not being managed properly. When it is the inevitable rise to number 1 will happen. History indicates Australia are not down for very long.

Posted by Evilpengwinz on (August 19, 2011, 9:04 GMT)

Delighted to see this, even as an Englishman. I hated seeing Australia being so uncompetitive (except for Johnson in Perth) in the Ashes. Hopefully England will win every game by a handful of runs and take the series 5-0 :)

Posted by nzcricket174 on (August 19, 2011, 8:56 GMT)

haha this is gold. keep michael clarke as a selector it worked wonders for nz. it may even work enough miracles to help nz win a test against aus.

Posted by   on (August 19, 2011, 8:45 GMT)

Me being a Sri Lankan living in Australia, I hope SL can at least implement quarter of what Australia is going to do.

Posted by   on (August 19, 2011, 8:44 GMT)

This may make some turn at the stomach but the best man for the job first time around has to be Howard our ex PM, it's hard for me to even type it but the man knows his cricket very well and wouldn't have any problems axing Smith or any other players stupidly played over the past few years, players like O'keefe would have already played with there stats meaning something and more effort towards test cricket. But who ever gets the job it has to be someone from outside the current cricket circles and not an ex player. A non bias person is needed for the full time job someone that can keep there head so there is honour in a baggy green again and players that aren't knocking the door down at state leave never get the chance and the ones that are do. NO MATTER THE AGE REMEMBER MILLER not everyone has to end up playing 100 matches, 18 matches Colin Miller and anyone who watched will remember forever, he even as the oldest? player to debut for Australia he can hold his head high.

Posted by SUNDOS on (August 19, 2011, 8:43 GMT)

I can't believe the timing of this announcement.In the middle of the Sri Lanka tour,a new way of shooting one;s self in the foot!!On a lighter note ,the "not so great" Greg should now be put to pasture.I can only imagine Saurav,Harbhajan,Zaheer and a few Indian cricketers buyinmg all and sundry a few rounds at the local bar!!

Posted by   on (August 19, 2011, 8:35 GMT)

Fair decision by CA.................but it will more responsibility to the members of the Selection Panel. Hope it will come successful as expected by CA. It also will be the matter of interest to see which persons will get selected for this upper level great responsibility. We expect some good things to happen in upcoming battles with India and also the next Ashes................. This time we can say only......... all the best Aussies.

Posted by   on (August 19, 2011, 8:35 GMT)

Bring on Warnie as the Coach/Lead Strategist or whatever :)

Posted by   on (August 19, 2011, 8:34 GMT)

Good for CA when dis will happen in BBCI..............???

Posted by Mcgrath-Dravid-Flintoff on (August 19, 2011, 8:27 GMT)

and BCCI should sack N srinivasan,whose with me?

Posted by Mcgrath-Dravid-Flintoff on (August 19, 2011, 8:19 GMT)

this is great news. maybe Australia can start dominating again. Steve Wasugh for head selector? Please, australia choose a man of integrity like Waugh or Border or Taylor. One of your past players with a good rep

Posted by jonesy2 on (August 19, 2011, 8:06 GMT)

haha funny that mick malthouse was consulted, i wonder what imput he had. this is what i want from all this: steve waugh to be the coach, rod marsh to be full time selector, from there things can go really nicely. im excited. really important to win the test series in sri lanka and go from there.

Posted by jonesy2 on (August 19, 2011, 8:06 GMT)

haha funny that mick malthouse was consulted, i wonder what imput he had. this is what i want from all this: steve waugh to be the coach, rod marsh to be full time selector, from there things can go really nicely. im excited. really important to win the test series in sri lanka and go from there.

Posted by jonesy2 on (August 19, 2011, 7:57 GMT)

WOOOOOOOOOOOOHOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!! this is the start of a new era of australian dominance!!!! rod marsh to be chief selector whose with me?

Posted by Chris_P on (August 19, 2011, 7:51 GMT)

Gee Andrew, for someone who has self confessed did a "very good job" this must come as a littlle bit humbling? Oh well, let's see if we can struggle without your "expert" input. Good riddance!

Posted by sachin_vvsfan on (August 19, 2011, 7:28 GMT)

BTW who makes this kind of report? I want the same thing to happen to BCCI and sack srikkanth and srinivasan

Posted by AusieBangaleeShameem on (August 19, 2011, 7:24 GMT)

It's good to see some heads rolling -- hope to see brilliance from great Aussie cricket team in their Sri Lanka tour.

Posted by Doogius on (August 19, 2011, 7:13 GMT)

Right on Wozza, right on...

Posted by RandyOZ on (August 19, 2011, 7:13 GMT)

Overall, a good review but not as extensive as I would've hoped. The fact that they RECOMMEND a review of the number of contracts annoys me. It should've been COMPLETED and put in this review, and not just the number of contracts for that matter, but the type of contract, ie: test squad cricketers getting the most lucrative contracts with the ability to play in any of the two tiers below them (ODI and T20). A lot of recommendations to further 'review' or 'assess' or 'improve' certain aspects but seemingly no solutions put forward, how many more reviews will it take to complete of all the Argus suggested reviews! @Wozza-CY, agreed re Sutherland. I think he had way too much influence on the review. @Alexk400, we have a host of young, 'tall' and very promising fast bowlers, get your facts straight.

Posted by Bigbanger666 on (August 19, 2011, 7:05 GMT)

At last!!!couldn't agree more with the theme here. @knocked thetopofoff you said it in one. Really starting to look forward to a new direction in AUS cricket.

Posted by mthw on (August 19, 2011, 6:59 GMT)

mmm, I thought Australia were in trouble, but reading this it looks like they will be back on track sooner than expected... Well done to them for going through the process properly, not making any rash decisions straight after the ashes and taking time to make long term decisions... Is a worrying sign for the rest of the cricket world, as with the talent in Australia, if they get the processes behind the scenes right, They will soon be very hard to beat...

Posted by Chris_Howard on (August 19, 2011, 6:55 GMT)

Hilditch is gone. Rejoice!

Posted by easymate on (August 19, 2011, 6:47 GMT)

Australia need a selector who can visulise teams for all the formats of the game. G.Chappel was a great batsman but never been a good selector. I play CHESS, Australia need someone who can employ stretegy (for test matches) and tactics (for onedayers/T20). I believe the selectors have played a future of Steve smith. (eg. when he bats, he is bowling all-rounder, when he bowls, he is batting all-rounder). Same is the case with Shaun Marsh.

Where is the policy of 'Horses for Courses"?

Wake up guys !!

Posted by   on (August 19, 2011, 6:38 GMT)

Thank God...finally some good sense has prevailed...

Posted by ashish514 on (August 19, 2011, 6:36 GMT)

An Indian fan like me will have mixed feelings. Chappell gone, good for Australia. But good for Australia=Bad for India, as we have to play down under this December.

Posted by   on (August 19, 2011, 6:34 GMT)

I wish all countries were as transparent and accountable as CA. It would do a world of good to our game and allow healthier competition between nations. The developments today are a step in the right direction and hopefully result in some strong performances from the Aussies come the end of the year!

Posted by Stevo_ on (August 19, 2011, 6:31 GMT)

@here2rock A panic ? After it took them months and months to put the report together? I'd hate too see how long a measured approach would take if this is a paniced approach

Posted by s.sreekant on (August 19, 2011, 6:10 GMT)

a very good decision,hope they remove nielsen also and the same committee get together with team and other past players to appoint a coach who is worthy and capable of giving good results and also appoint selectors who has an eye for future and knows about local state talents, At least one selector should travel to different states and talk to the respective coaches about upcoming talents.

Posted by xylo on (August 19, 2011, 6:09 GMT)

The first and biggest step in solving a problem is acknowledging that it exists. That CA has taken it head on is commendable. This might be a crisis for the short-term, but could prove to be the right catalyst in the long run. I can only see Australian cricket going up from here.

Posted by shamlaatu on (August 19, 2011, 6:03 GMT)

A great example for PCB as how to take hard and positive steps towards improvement.

Posted by stickboy on (August 19, 2011, 5:59 GMT)

whoops i mean greg chappel, not ian chappel

Posted by stickboy on (August 19, 2011, 5:54 GMT)

Looks like a pretty comprehensive process. It's about time the Australian cricket team get rid of their conservative ways...at least in terms of some of the staff they employ. Hopefully they will be more open to coaching/admin positions from people from other countries and get rid of the old guard whom i think are not there due to their inovative imputs (rather their reputation from another era *cough* Ian Chappel....) Hopefully this move will take us in a new direction and new era that will once again put us ahead of the rest.

Posted by smudgeon on (August 19, 2011, 5:53 GMT)

wow, sounds like a pretty major upheaval indeed. good idea to have the captain & coach involed in the selection panel, i believe other countries have had this structure in place for some time. i'm sure the anti-Chappell brigade will be pleased to see him gone (and quite vocal about it - something about that man rankles a lot of people), although to be honest i had no idea if he was doing a good or bad job as it is.

Posted by   on (August 19, 2011, 5:51 GMT)

WOWOW................aSUTRALIA

Posted by Andy.rockz on (August 19, 2011, 5:51 GMT)

Oh god! Symonds will be back there is a tough contender for SA and ENG

can't wait to see the page 2 side of cricinfo regarding this article :))))

Posted by ashy2010 on (August 19, 2011, 5:50 GMT)

Good for Australia that Chappell is out.. It will be good times for Australian Cricket from now on..Get Steve Waugh as Coach.. He will bring the fighting spirit back to the team.. Clarke will learn a lot from Steve..

Posted by Nightwing32 on (August 19, 2011, 5:50 GMT)

Well I hope we can re-fresh and start winning again. It will be interesting to see what happens to Nielsen though and who replaces him.

Posted by   on (August 19, 2011, 5:46 GMT)

HOPE AUSTRALIA GETS A EXCELLENT SELECTOR AND COACH.LIKE ENGLAND HAS.........

Posted by Alexk400 on (August 19, 2011, 5:41 GMT)

I hope BCCI does review and appoint selectors for bowling team and batting team. Because indian selectors has no responsibility. Quota system not working. They should abolish quota system for bowling. India need tall bowlers.

Aussies also need tall bowlers to compete against SA and England. Mitchell johnson is erratic , Brett lee finished. They need blood tall young bowlers now. So in two years they will have good nucleus. Playing brett kee is waste when you consider future. I will even dump mitchell johnson and bring in tall bowlers. Unless mitchell johnson start to bat well not slogging then he can occupy all rounder spot.

Posted by thetopofoff on (August 19, 2011, 5:40 GMT)

Hilditch gone - YES! Chapel gone - YES! Now to get rin of Nielson and put someone in who knows international cricket as head coach to work with the new captain.

Posted by here2rock on (August 19, 2011, 5:36 GMT)

Sound like panic and mess!

Posted by Rockyyyims on (August 19, 2011, 5:33 GMT)

australia 'll soon be back at the top...

Posted by papadum_man01 on (August 19, 2011, 5:30 GMT)

Ding dong the witch is dead!!!!Finally some sense has come to the Australian cricket team!!!!!!!!Now hopefully we will see some far better decisions being made by the Aussies!!Now hopefully some real players will be selected and some too old (who will not be mentiond....) will be dropped!!!! Now hopefully Australia will become a world power again, and not resemble pakistani-esque stuff upps!!!!

Posted by ikmal--syd on (August 19, 2011, 5:30 GMT)

Australia at last has realised the obvious and done the right thing, it is time for management of SLC and past players of sri lanka do the same for SLC.

Posted by sreeni2507 on (August 19, 2011, 5:29 GMT)

thank god!!!!!Finally Hilditch is ditched....

Posted by Wozza-CY on (August 19, 2011, 5:20 GMT)

With Boon & Ponting having moved on from their previous posts, Cox, Hilditch, Chappel & Neilsen will bear the brunt of the blame for the slide in Oz cricket. What about any executives or board members? Surely their decisions over past number of years have contributed significantly to this demise? Oh yeah.....I forgot, they had a man on the inside (Sutherland) of the review. I have no arguments against the aforementioned individuals bearing the blame, but this review presented an opportunity to REALLY fix the problems of CA, but it appears the changes won't be as far reaching as they should be which is a real shame.

Posted by   on (August 19, 2011, 5:13 GMT)

Well, we are finally seeing change, someone has to be responsible for the ashes loss, Nielson, Chappell and Hilditch.

Posted by   on (August 19, 2011, 5:05 GMT)

What a professionally run organisation as opposed to our bunch of jokers

Posted by   on (August 19, 2011, 5:02 GMT)

Goodbye Hilditch!!! We wont miss u...

Posted by Aspraso on (August 19, 2011, 5:01 GMT)

Ahem, Greg Chappell booted out once again by another Board.

Posted by boris6491 on (August 19, 2011, 5:00 GMT)

What an incredible relief. I hope the image above which includes the word 'might' will be changed to 'are' sooner than later. A step in the right direction no doubt. Now, Hilditch and Chappell both should be banished from national administration in any position.

Posted by   on (August 19, 2011, 4:52 GMT)

We can expect a resurgent Australian side now that Guru Greg has lost his opportunity to further mess up things.

Posted by hilditchmustgo on (August 19, 2011, 4:48 GMT)

Excellent. Im glad the report is transparent and is actually working towards quickly restructuring CA. Well done. Now lets see if it works.

Posted by HatsforBats on (August 19, 2011, 4:48 GMT)

It starts with a bang. Ding-dong the witch is dead! I know you're not supposed to take pleasure in the misfortune of others, but this is too good. Not sure about the captain being a selector. Who drops the captain?

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Brydon CoverdaleClose
Brydon Coverdale Assistant Editor Possibly the only person to win a headline-writing award for a title with the word "heifers" in it, Brydon decided agricultural journalism wasn't for him when he took up his position with ESPNcricinfo in Melbourne. His cricketing career peaked with an unbeaten 85 in the seconds for a small team in rural Victoria on a day when they could not scrounge up 11 players and Brydon, tragically, ran out of partners to help him reach his century. He is also a compulsive TV game-show contestant and has appeared on half a dozen shows in Australia.
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