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Vaughan stands down as New Zealand CEO

Brydon Coverdale

September 21, 2011

Comments: 12 | Text size: A | A

New Zealand Cricket CEO Justin Vaughan is all smiles at a press conference, Auckland, June 21, 2011
Justin Vaughan is keen to spend more time with his young family © Getty Images
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Justin Vaughan has cited the need to spend more time with his family as the major reason for his decision to step down as the chief executive of New Zealand Cricket. Vaughan, 44, insisted it was entirely his own decision to finish at the end of November, having spent four years in the position after he replaced Martin Snedden in 2007.

Snedden could be one of the front-runners to take the job for a second time, given that his role as the head of the 2011 Rugby World Cup organising team will soon be redundant. Vaughan said he made his decision based on the needs of his family, and also to allow the new chief executive plenty of time in the role ahead of the 2015 World Cup, which will be co-hosted by Australia and New Zealand.

"It's something that I've been conscious of over the last few months, around the balance of the needs of my family and the requirements of the business," Vaughan said. "I've been spending a lot of time recently overseas and I think every time I go away it's gnawing at me that really I ought to be spending time with my children, who are growing up.

"Also from an organisational point of view, with the 2015 World Cup hosting being so important, I think a new CEO needs a year or two under their belt to fully maximise their potential. Adding up all those pieces made me feel that I was better off making the decision sooner rather than later."

Vaughan's departure will come at the end of a period of significant change for New Zealand Cricket. In the past 12 months they have appointed a new coach, John Wright; a new captain, Ross Taylor; a new bowling coach, Damien Wright; and a new Black Caps team manager, Mike Sandle.

But the biggest changes have been to the structure of the high-performance programme itself. John Buchanan has been installed in the newly-created role of director of cricket, and one of his moves has been to change the make-up of the selection panel.

The little-known Australian, Kim Littlejohn, will be the national selection manager and will choose teams along with the head coach, Wright. Vaughan's decision will take some stability away from the changing organisation, but he said he was confident NZC was on the right path, and he needed to spend more time with his three children, aged 13, 11 and seven.

"I feel now that the key people have been in place now for a while, and in the end I just felt that the needs of my family were significant and I couldn't continue to do the job properly, which requires a lot of international travel, and commit to the time I think my family needs at the moment," he said. "I made my decision on that basis.

"It's entirely of my own accord, 100%. I am conscious there's been change and certainly a good chunk of me would love to be able to stay and see the fruits of what's been planted, because I really believe there's huge opportunities for New Zealand Cricket and the foundations have now been laid. But my personal circumstances and my desire to spend more time at home has really overridden the part of me that would love to stay and be involved."

Vaughan said his biggest regret was that he would not be part of the organisation for the 2015 World Cup, which he said presented a major opportunity for cricket in the country. However, he said he was pleased with the progress NZC had made during his time in charge, which included growing the revenue of the organisation by 60%.

"If you look back over the last four or five years, we've made some great strides," he said. "We've got an international programme which is extremely good, with the new FTP with frequent tours by England and India. We've also got a great partnership arrangement with our players' association now for the next eight years.

"I think we've got the right structures and people in place around our elite cricket area with John Buchanan as director of cricket and John Wright as the head coach of the Black Caps. There are emerging opportunities, areas like the United States, which we need to build upon.

"But I suppose in terms of future focus, building on those opportunities but also fully capitalising on the World Cup in 2015, that will be a once-in-a-lifetime event. It should be brilliant for cricket in this country in lots of ways. We're seeing that at the moment with rugby. Cricket will have that opportunity in three and a bit years' time. We've got to be fully prepared and fully ready to make the most of that."

NZC will begin the search for a replacement immediately. The chairman of NZC, Chris Moller, said Vaughan would be missed both nationally and globally. "I know Justin is highly regarded by his international colleagues," Moller said, "and has been very effective and influential in terms of his work with the ICC and cricket CEOs around the world."

Brydon Coverdale is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

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© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by mthw on (September 22, 2011, 8:56 GMT)

@thrash metal.... Couldn't care less about Sth Africa really mate... Just want to see my team playing cricket and playing cricket competitvely, on a consistent basis... Thats all mate... They have a young team and the only way to improve is to actually play...

Posted by thrash_metal on (September 21, 2011, 12:43 GMT)

@ mthw So? Neither has South Africa played a single game since the world cup.

Posted by mthw on (September 21, 2011, 9:52 GMT)

Off the topic, but New Zrealand hasn't played a match since the world cup... Seriously??? That was March, its now september, nearly october.... If we want to compete, we must play games... as a team, not all around the world playing 20/20 for different teams... If none of the Test playing nations want to play us, then we could play first class games (4 days) and one dayers against the best of the rest (Ireland, Kenya, Afganistan, Canada, Netherlands, Scotland etc...) There are many to chose from, and I am sure they would love to play a full tour vs a Test team.. It would help both countries.... Its better than not playing for 9 months at all!!!!

Posted by Dr_Van_Nostrand on (September 21, 2011, 9:14 GMT)

About time. What he did to Shane Bond is unforgiveable.

Posted by   on (September 21, 2011, 9:01 GMT)

Justin Vaughan now required to boost international performance to newsl welcome decision

Posted by ClarkeAlyssa87 on (September 21, 2011, 8:25 GMT)

Great news, his time at the helm has been very underwhelming.

Posted by StevieS on (September 21, 2011, 7:53 GMT)

"A sad loose to NZC. He has done a good job and set NZC on the right track for the future"

You surely jest? Bond, Flemming, Astle, Moles, Bracewell ... need I say more. He should of been shown the door after our best bowler since Sir Richard was out of international cricket for 3 years because of a "mistake" made by Vaughan.

Posted by   on (September 21, 2011, 7:26 GMT)

I wish Justin Vaughan all the best. And now........woohoo!! That has to be the single worst tenure by any head of NZC in the last 40 years. I won't forgive the treatment of Shane Bond or other cricketers, all the poor decisions made over that time either.

I have hope as always, but don't get someone worse!!

Posted by   on (September 21, 2011, 6:53 GMT)

I thing vahgen did the right thing but it is sad to the nzc

Posted by   on (September 21, 2011, 3:49 GMT)

A sad loose to NZC. He has done a good job and set NZC on the right track for the future.

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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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