Australia news January 30, 2014

Departing Rixon takes a swipe at Cricket Australia

ESPNcricinfo staff

Steve Rixon, Australia's outgoing assistant coach, has declared that he had "very little respect" for Cricket Australia and in particular what saw as interference with cricket decisions from above.

Rixon has been axed from the coaching staff, although he said he had no problem with head coach Darren Lehmann's desire to build his own coaching group and he would have finished his tenure before this year's IPL anyway. However, in a radio interview on Thursday, Rixon took a parting shot at Cricket Australia and its general manager of team performance, Pat Howard.

"I'm not getting into a slinging match ... I have very little respect for the organisation, so I think we best just leave it there," Rixon said on Sky Sports Radio. "I don't like a lot of things they do. They interfere basically with a lot of the cricket decisions over the period of time and I don't necessarily agree with that.

"It's none of my business. At the end of the day, I do what I do, I go out and do it to the best I know how. But it's probably just draining and the one thing I've lived my cricket life with is a major passion for the game."

When pressed on whether it was Howard, a former rugby union international, who Rixon had a problem with, Rixon replied: "Let me say, I hope he was a good rugby player."

Rixon was brought into the setup as fielding coach in June 2011, before Mickey Arthur was named head coach later that year. Rixon said as well as his duties in drilling the fielders, part of his role was to be a sounding board for the then new captain Michael Clarke, with whom he had a long-standing relationship from Clarke's junior years.

"With Michael now being very content with where he is, Boof's obviously come in with a stronger approach to that," he said. "That's why I think cricket's in a very good shape with Australia, we're starting to get all those bits and pieces.

"Darren will eventually get a team around him that he's very, very comfortable with and that's fine. That's the way life is, that's the way it is with coaching. He's come in with some heavy hands and he's done a very good job in actually sorting a few of these things out and I complimented him for that. If he continues down this road, he'll get the best out of this Australian cricket team."

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