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Departing Rixon takes a swipe at Cricket Australia

ESPNcricinfo staff

January 30, 2014

Comments: 18 | Text size: A | A

Michael Clarke speaks to the media as Steve Rixon looks on, Sharjah, August 26, 2012
Steve Rixon said part of his role when appointed in 2011 was to provide support for new captain Michael Clarke © AFP
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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."

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by Shaggy076 on (January 31, 2014, 4:19 GMT)

A few things I don't get with what Rixon is saying, he is backing Lehmann says Australian cricket is in a great place with Lehmann running his own set-up but that is the same reason he seem to have an issue with CA for sacking him. He thinks Australian cricket is on the right path and fully knows that path doesn't include him, I just don't get what he is trying to say about CA.

Posted by   on (January 31, 2014, 1:06 GMT)

Great respect for Rixon in how he handled this situation. We all know howard and cricket Aus are doing their best to ruin the australian setup. And rixon knows it. But he also knows Boof is the way forward for this team and respects his choices. Rixon is needed by NSW right now so i suspect he will go back and provide a boost to them.

Posted by popcorn on (January 31, 2014, 0:19 GMT)

At least, I for one, and a lot many other Australian Cricket fans, respect you, Steve, for what you did for the Team.

Posted by Kelum_w on (January 30, 2014, 23:07 GMT)

He may be a great coach and an astute servant of Aus cricket but when it comes to the public eye he acts like a low class bogan. Taking pot shots like this straight after being fired is pretty unprofessional behavior. Not to mention the way he handled the SLC coaching offer debacle. If payment wasn't up to his CA standard then keep quiet about it and politely reject their offer, no need to make a media farce about it.

Posted by   on (January 30, 2014, 22:57 GMT)

I would take Rixons opinions and advice over Pat Howards any day. Staggered Pat Howard still has a job. If i were England i would be getting hold of Rixons phone number urgently.

Posted by Meety on (January 30, 2014, 13:16 GMT)

Rixon should of been the coach instead of Arthurs. That said - I don't think he would of done as good of a job as Lehman.

Posted by dorothydix on (January 30, 2014, 10:59 GMT)

Disgraceful way to end a very good man's career. England would do well to use his knowledge and experience particularly to improve their performances in Australia. Unfortunately the recent Ashes win has covered many gaping cracks saving the positions of one or two highly incompetent administrators. No need to name names as those who understand the game already know.

Posted by pat_one_back on (January 30, 2014, 10:18 GMT)

What rubbish @sifter132, if you're not CA social media team you're just working for free. Rixon is internationally respected and entitled if not obliged to answer honestly now off contract, particularly in light of being publicly executed as opposed to gracefully exiting on completion of contract as a quality management team would have released. Kudos to him for being supportive of those that really drive on field success and authentic about management detracting from it. The fit was clearly not there following Mickey and that's clearly fine with all bar CA management who created the headline for reasons that we can only draw from this episode to be spitefully controlling.

Posted by Mervo on (January 30, 2014, 10:11 GMT)

Steve Rixon has been a good servant of Australian cricket and this lot of sour grapes does not do credit to his long legacy. Go quietly Steve, it is time for a new order or players as coaches, such as Darren Lehman. Move on.

Posted by Jagger on (January 30, 2014, 8:57 GMT)

The fielding has improved remarkably since the reinstatement of Mike Young. They are more attentive, catching well, and hitting the stumps again. But fielding aside, there was no longer a place for Rixon. The Arthur-Rixon appointment was political. It should have been Darren Lehmann first picked but the then government made it clear to the ACB that the cash would flow elsewhere unless the squeaky clean foreigner who ushered in a quota system; a foreigner the left-wing intelligentsia could call their own; a foreigner 'we' think foreigners and indigenous alike should all aspire to be, got the job. Rixon was his translator, slash, damage controller.

Good riddance the lot of you.

Posted by TheBigBoodha on (January 30, 2014, 8:25 GMT)

Crunch them numbers, Pat. I'm sure you can calculate the outcome of the SA series already.

Posted by   on (January 30, 2014, 7:32 GMT)

Good on you Stumper. Tell him as it is. Having had the pleasure of working with him in the past I can say that he is a brilliant keeper and a master coach who has brought success success to any team he worked with. Too many management types in cricket administration interfering with practical cricket knowledge. You just have to look at the out of touch ICC to see that the CA apple hasn't fallen far from the tree. Cricket administration makes FIFA and the IOC look like ethical and administration geniuses.

Posted by xylo on (January 30, 2014, 6:04 GMT)

CA is sitting pretty right now, and Rixon might attract a lot of flak, but let's wait and see the team's performance in SA.

Posted by   on (January 30, 2014, 5:09 GMT)

Sifter123 is making grossly uninformed jibberish. Rixon is as good as anyone in the coaching ranks in Australia. I'm sure Rixon's expertise will be appreciated back around the Sutherland District Cricket Club and somewhere within the NSW set-up.

Posted by   on (January 30, 2014, 4:25 GMT)

Good on you Stumper - you've done a great job...........

Posted by BradmanBestEver on (January 30, 2014, 3:26 GMT)

Yep, good old Australian management stuffing up an organization once again.

That is why I don't work there anymore

Posted by   on (January 30, 2014, 3:15 GMT)

Listening to the radio interview this morning, I couldn't help but get the feeling that there more to this story then meets the eye and I am appalled at the treatment of this dedicated and talented coach. Steve only had another week or so to go on his contract and it would have been a lot more appropriate for CA to announce that they were not taking up the option of extending his contract.

Posted by sifter132 on (January 30, 2014, 3:13 GMT)

I'm reading this as: "Cricket Australia doesn't do it my way, therefore I don't like them". Pretty childish from Rixon in my view. If you can't say anything nice, keep it to yourself. Don't drag something else into the mud.

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