'We've got to have the very best people running world cricket' March 25, 2007

MacLaurin calls for review of ICC

Cricinfo staff

ECB's former chairman insists cricket must 'have the finest people running [the game] that you can possibly have' © Getty Images

Lord MacLaurin, the former chairman of the England and Wales Cricket Board, has called for a major review of the ICC in the wake of the murder of Bob Woolmer last Sunday.

"When you have a terrible situation like we are now facing, one's got to look at the whole of the operation: the directorship; the way it's run; the calibre of people that are doing it," he said. "We've got to have the very best people running world cricket, otherwise we will continue to have problems."

Although police do not, as yet, have any proof that corruption and match-fixing are the heartbeat of the whole investigation, the smoke signals are there. Rumours abound that Woolmer's forthcoming book was to reveal the true extent of the game's rotten core and have invited reactions from across cricket's community, with Michael Vaughan, the England captain, conceding corruption is, in his "gut instinct," still part of the game.

"When you've got something like this happening, which has really besmirched this World Cup, we've got to look at absolutely everything in cricket and make sure no stone is left unturned to make sure we do the very, very best for cricket around the world," MacLaurin said.

It was during MacLaurin's tenure as ECB chairman, in 2000, that the first thorough investigation into cricket's match-fixing was undertaken. MacLaurin employed Sir Paul Condon, the former Metropolitan Police Commissioner who, although now retired, is on standby to assist. In his 2001 report Condon recommended a permanent Anti-Corruption and Security Unit (ACSU) be installed which, since 2003, has been in West Indies preparing for the World Cup and identifying suspect gangs and syndicates.

"The only way I can suggest you stop it - or try to stop it - is to make sure you have the finest people running world cricket that you can possibly have," MacLaurin said. "But you will always have a problem, whether it be cricket or soccer or even in business."