Australia news August 16, 2012

Edwards seeks unanimous vote for CA board change

Wally Edwards, the Cricket Australia chairman, will be seeking a unanimous vote in favour of governance change when the game's Australian custodians sit down for an extraordinary general meeting (EGM) in Melbourne on Friday to continue the march towards independent board directors.

South Australia has remained outspoken in its opposition to the proposal for non-state-aligned CA directors put forward by the Crawford and Carter Governance review and accepted by the other states, however the measures will go through even if the SACA again raises a dissenting voice at the EGM tomorrow.

Edwards said his strong preference was for a unanimous vote to ensure the path towards a new governance model would be smooth and united.

"I'd prefer it to be unanimous obviously, we have to go forward as a united business and that's what we're trying to achieve, a one business mentality right across Australian cricket," Edwards told ESPNcricinfo. "That's the next phase after governance, to make it a better business and be more efficient, more dynamic, and deliver more services for less dollars - set the business up for the next 50 years.

"We know where they [SA] stand, I don't expect them to change their position between now and the members meeting. What we're voting on is something they agree with fundamentally so we'll just wait and see whether they decide if they want to vote no or yes. Hopefully we've got enough votes to get it through."

Edwards revealed that the SACA had used the ICC's governance model - itself in a state of some discussion following the raft of changes recommended by Lord Woolf's governance review - as a reason why it was opposed to the prohibition of CA board directors also holding positions on state association boards.

"They think it's a better system, that's their belief and you have to accept that," Edwards said. "They think it's a better system to have someone connected from their board to the CA board and they use the ICC as an example of that of course, where we are connected.

"I can understand where they're coming from. They pretty well agree with everything else that we're doing. It's just a fundamental disagreement there and that's their right."

Irrespective of SA's opposition, the wheels for change are very likely to gather motion at the meeting, where the board will also consider the plans devised to select its first three independent directors in October.

A nominations committee will decide on the trio, with the committee to be composed of two state board chairmen, two businessmen not formally associated with Australian cricket in any way, and Edwards.

Daniel Brettig is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo. He tweets here